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Wolesi Jirga approves all 16 minister-nominees

Abdul Zuhoor Qayomi-KABUL: After protracted delay, finally the cabinet has been almost completed as the recently introduced 16 ministers-designate got vote of confidence on Saturday.

However, the pick for ministry of defense has not been introduced, so far. The Wolesi Jirga (WJ) or Lower House of the parliament through confidence vote approved all the nominees as ministers.

Nominee for the ministry of water and energy Ali Ahmad Usmani got 168 votes, nominee for the ministry of education Asadullah Hanif Balkhi got 161 votes, Farida Momand got 184 votes and became minister for higher education, Assadullah Zamir got 192 votes and was approved as minister for agriculture, irrigation and livestock. Minister-designate for commerce and industries Humayon Rasa got 170 votes, ministerial nominee for information and culture Abdul Barai Jahani got 120 votes. Sayed Saadat Mansoor Naderi got 202 as minister for urban development, Nasreen Oryakhail got 169 votes and was approved as minister for labor, social affairs, martyrs and disable, Delbar Nazari got 131 votes and was approved as minister for women affaires, Mahmoud Balegh got 168 votes as minister for public works, Salamat Azemi got 155 votes as minister for counter-narcotic, Muhammadullah Batash got 176 votes and was approved as minister for transportation, Abdul Basir Anwar got 138 votes and became justice minister, Nawab Mangal got 188 votes as minister for tribal affaires and frontiers, Abdul Razaq Wahedi got 152 votes as  minister for telecommunication and information technology, and Abdul Satar Murad got 152 votes and became minister of economy.

Every nominee required at least 120 votes of confidence to survive. It is while lawmakers already approved eight ministers three months ago.

Ex-President Hamid Karzai welcomed approval of the 16 nominees as ministers and appreciated the lawmakers for their decision.

He hoped the ministers would serve public honestly and work with dedication to resolve all outstanding challenges.

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