Baghdad, Oct 28 (UiTV/IANS) – The Iraqi Parliament has approved the new cabinet lineup presented by Prime Minister-designate Mohammed Shia’ al-Sudani.
Up to 253 lawmakers attending Thursday’s session raised their hands to show approval of the new ministers when Parliament Speaker Mohammed al-Halbousi read out their names one by one, reports Xinhua news agency.
Parliament voted with an absolute majority to grant confidence to 21 ministers out of 23, as the voting for the ministers of environment and housing was postponed due to political disputes.
It also voted in favour of Fuad Hussein as Deputy Prime Minister while keeping his position as minister of foreign affairs. They also voted for Hayyan Abdul Ghani Abdul Zahra as Deputy Prime Minister and minister of oil, and Mohammed Ali Tamim as another Deputy Prime Minister and minister of planning.
Al-Sudani read out his government program, which includes combating administrative and financial corruption, addressing the unemployment problem, supporting the poor, vulnerable and low-income people, as well as improving public services.
It also includes economic reforms, especially in the agricultural, industrial and banking sectors, in addition to supporting the private sector.
The program also focuses on addressing the outstanding issues between Baghdad and the semi-autonomous region of Kurdistan.
Al-Sudani promised to exert every effort to succeed in end their suffering, while pledging to build a strong economy capable of achieving qualitative change in services.
After the new cabinet was approved, al-Sudani and the cabinet members were sworn.
For his part, President Abdul Latif Rashid congratulated al-Sudani and expressed confidence in the latter’s ability to face the challenges in the country.
Meanwhile, the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) issued a statement that hailed the approval of al-Sudani’s cabinet and reaffirmed “its steadfast commitment to supporting the government and people of Iraq”.
On October 13, Rashid tasked al-Sudani with forming a new government after the latter was nominated by the Coordination Framework, the largest parliamentary alliance.