Lower House rejects Karzai's nominees for Cabinet slots
12 September, 2012
KABUL: The lower house of parliament on Tuesday rejected nominees for three Cabinet slots and the spy service chief, saying the picks should be introduced to lawmakers for a vote of confidence by the president or one of his deputies.
On Sept. 2, Karzai nominated Bismillah Mohammadi, the former interior minister, as defence minister to replace Abdul Rahim Wardak.
Both Mohammadi and Wardak were ousted by parliament for failing to prevent cross-border attacks.
Ghulam Mujtaba Patang, deputy interior minister, was chosen to head the ministry and ex-Kandahar governor Asadullah Khalid as National Directorate of Security chief. He replaces Rahmatullah Nabil, who is expected to be given an ambassadorial assignment.
Similarly, Haji Azizullah Din Mohammad was picked as border and tribal affairs minister.
Mohammad was a campaigner for Karzai during the last presidential election in eastern Nangarhar province. He has also served as the governor of Kabul and Nangarhar.
Through a formal letter, the Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs recently introduced the nominees to the Wolesi Jirga for a trust vote — a constitutional requirement.
In order to brief legislators on their plans and priorities, Karzai's picks appeared before a special session of the assembly. Parliamentary Affairs Minister Humayun Aziz introduced them, but legislators refused to vote for them.
Speaker Abdul Rauf Ibrahimi said under the rules of business, the president or one of his deputies has to introduce the nominees.
The house could not violate the relevant rule, which could be amended with a two-thirds majority, he added.
But a public representative from southern Ghazni province, Mohammad Arif Rahmani, believed the nominees should have been accepted. In the past, he claimed, members had given trust votes to nominees introduced by the parliamentary affairs minister.