Iran Briefing: Asadollah Abbasi holds a PhD degree in Education and Planning. He graduated from university in 2009; he was a staunch supporter of Mahmood Ahmadinejad’s government, during his presidency, and served as the labor minister in the last year of Mahmood Ahmadinejad’s government.
He served in the Seventh and Eighth Parliament as “an observer member of the Supreme Council of Education, the head of the Cultural Faction and the Tourism Faction, the vice chairman of the Cooperative Faction, the vice man of Sport Faction, as well as the vice man of the World Inter-Parliamentary Group during the Eighth Parliament, Deputy Chairman of Iran-China Friendship Group, the head of the Parliament expedition to the Inter-Parliamentary Union Seminar in India, and the chairman of the Parliament expedition of Education and Research Commission to Japan, South Korea, Malaysia and Singapore”.
He has also held other responsibilities such as: “teaching in Educational Complexes of Veterans of Tehran province, Permanent member of Board Trustees of Gilan University, Board member of the Fundamental Evolution of Education, member of the Strategic Research Council Center of Parliament, member of the Permanent Commission of the Higher Council for Science, Research and Technology, faculty member of Payam-e Noor University, member of the National Committee for Education and Sustainable Development in Iranian National Commission of UNESCO, member of the Management Committee of Information Technology (IT) during the Tenth presidential administration, member of the executive Council and the Board of Directors of the Red Crescent Society of Gilan province, a member of the General Assembly of Maskan banks, Agriculture Bank (Keshavarzi), Workers’ Welfare Bank (Refah-e Kargaran) and Sepah, a board member of the Central Fund of Employment, Marriage and Imam Reza Mehr Housing, Staff member of the Welfare of Workers, head of the Labor Supreme Council, the secretary of the Supreme Council of Welfare and Social Security (Refah and Tamin Ejtemaei), Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Social Security and Health Insurance of rural and nomadic areas, head of the Job Evaluation Committee, secretary of the High Council of Employment, chairman of the Executive Committee of the Civil Service Management Code, head of the General Assembly of the Cooperative and Development Bank”.
He has held such responsibilities while in the security system of the Islamic Republic, it is impossible for the individuals to get involved in without passing through the different security filters. Moreover, after eliminating the oppositions from organizations in the 80s, especially after disposing the reformists from the government, the strict recruitment hiring for individuals has been significantly increased.
After impeachment of “Abdolreza Sheikholeslami”, Abbasi was proposed to Parliament as Minister of Cooperatives, Labor and Social Welfare by Ahmadinejad’s government.
At the parliamentary meeting for the vote of confidence in him for the position, Ali Motahari was one of the opponents; he mentioned the history of his previous occupations and the disagreement between Abbasi and the Ministry as the main reason for his opposition, saying: “Among the responsibilities of Mr. Abbasi there are some responsibilities such as deputy Chairman of the Education Committee, member of the Supervisory Council of the Assembly of the Supreme Council of Education, head of Educators of Parliament Fraction etc. But these positions are related to the field of education and Mr. Abbasi’s education records dominate his other responsibilities, so that would be more appropriate if he was introduced to a position in Education.”
Mentioning the proposed minister’s plan, Motahari said: “How a person who will be responsible for the ministry for just 3 months, can implement the social justice program which has been the issue that we’re still looking for at 30 years after the revolution?” In this regard, he mentioned Abbasi’s illogical support of the government as the second reason for his opposition to the proposed minister, saying: “During the Eighth Parliament, Mr. Abbasi was always an illogical supporter of the government.”
Before his ministry, Asadollah Abbasi had served as deputy of the Department of Development and Management of the Ministry of Cooperatives, Labor and Social Welfare as well as the representative of Roudsar and Amlash in the Seventh and Eighth Parliaments.
On May 5, 2013 he was approved to serve as the minister by obtaining the majority of 200 votes of the representatives from a total of 252 votes. Abbasi’s opponents knew him to be associated with the Deviant Faction (Jaryan-e Enherafi) so that Heidarpoor, the representative of Shahreza, Dehaghan, Manzarieh and Golashn, explicitly stated the issue saying: “During his eight years of Parliament, the Deviant Faction was our problem but Mr. Abbasi was intimate with them cooperating and collaborating with the Deviant Faction at that time.”
Hiring 500 people overnight through his signed decree without any due process can be noted as one of the issues that occurred in the short period of his ministry.
According to Mehr news, anecdotal evidence from the Social Security Organization states that on Saturday evening, after providing a transaction prepared by the Board of Trustees, Asadullah Abbasi, the Minister of Cooperatives, Labor and Social Welfare, received the letter during the final hours of the night and after doing some deletions and additions, he signed the employment authorization of 500 individuals in Social Security and delivered it to the Administrative Financial Office.
The Board of trustees of Social Security committed this unconstitutional act while, based on the law and employment regulations, recruitment has to be done through the permission of the Board of Directors. The issue has been mentioned and described in detail in the Ninth Parliamentary investigation reports on the Social Security Organization.
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