MPs say they are unruffled by latest Cabinet reshuffle

HM king-N Minesters (3)
His Majesty King Abdullah and Prime Minister Bisher Al-Khasawneh sit for an official photo with newly sworn in ministers on October 27, 2022. (File photo: Royal Court)
AMMAN – Lawmakers said they are unruffled by the latest reshuffle in the Cabinet of Prime Minister Bisher Al-Khasawneh, saying the change was pointless, given that the problem lies in the government’s approach and policies.اضافة اعلان

The shuffle, however, was praised by some for bringing in three more women to the Cabinet, raising their number to five, and making good on promises for women empowerment.

The latest change also saw five new ministers taking office, while six left.

Lawmaker Mohammad Al-Alaqmeh said that the cabinet’s reshuffle “disappointed us, and was beyond our hopes and expectations”.

He told Jordan News that the hope was to “replace the whole economic team with one capable to attract investments, and improve the national economy by increasing economic growth and reducing poverty and unemployment, in line with the Economic Modernization Vision”.

He said that any Cabinet reshuffle that excludes the whole economic team, or ignores appointing competent Cabinet ministers to develop plans and programs that would improve the citizen’s standard of living, “will be just a change of faces, nothing more”.

MP Feras Al-Ajarmeh told Jordan News that the “Cabinet’s reshuffle is not technocrat-based”.

He said that there is no “convincing reason” for ministers to leave and others to take office. “The problem is the approach, not the ministries themselves”.

“We are in a vicious circle, and there is no way out of it unless we come up with solutions outside the box, especially in light of the prevailing political and economic woes,” he noted.

He said that the absence of consultation with the Lower House on the new shape of the Cabinet “points to a political supremacy, one of the traits of the prime minister”.

Lawmaker Bilal Al-Momani told Jordan News that the reason behind the reshuffle was “ambiguous”. He added that he is not optimistic about the outcome, “especially with regard to giving some ministers two portfolios, and the failure to include the economic team in the reshuffle.”

He pointed out that the premier “did not consult with the legislative authority, nor did he inform anyone about his planned changes.”

MP Adnan Moshooqa told Jordan News that the reshuffle “was not at the required level”, or as people and their parliamentary representatives had hoped.

He said the changes suggest that the government wants to impose the merger of public office and the restructuring of the public sector, adding that it was “unreasonable for one minister to run two ministries simultaneously”.

“We were expecting the reshuffle to include competent decision makers, but the change was weak and beyond expectation,” he added.

MP Zainab Al-Bdoul was more optimistic, pointing to a possible change under the command of more women in the Cabinet. “I expect the women Cabinet ministers to accomplish a lot while in office, as they have experience that qualifies them to implement reforms in the government sector,” she said.

She said she hoped the Cabinet, as a whole, will be able to execute the needed economic and administrative reforms.

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