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50 Iranian MPs prepare motion to impeach transport minister: press


Fifty MPs have lodged a motion with the presiding board of the Majlis (Parliament), calling for the impeachment of Transport Minister Ahmad Khorram, IRNA reported from Tehran on Monday quoting the local press.

The Persian-language newspaper 'Mardomsalari' quoted MP from Qazvin Naser Qavami as saying that the motion had been prepared as a result of Khorram's poor performance in office.

"The MPs have forwarded the motion because of Khorram's indifference toward the quality of development projects in the area of roads and transportation, his failure to supervise the projects and the mismanagement in his ministry," Qavami said.

Also, the Persian-language newspaper 'Siasat-E Rooz' quoted Qavami as saying that Khorram will be impeached for his press interviews, and his "empty promises" to remove the problems of Iran's air aviation sector.

He further added that Khorram will be impeached for exercising discrimination in office and his inability to arrange coordination in devising the credits for development projects of the aviation sector in the current Iranian calendar year of 1382 (ending March 19, 2004).

Qavami also claimed that the transport minister was involved in collusion to promote directors under his supervision who had been found guilty of administrative misconduct, saying that this had been another reason for drafting Khorram's impeachment motion.

The Majlis deputies in February 2002 had also taken a similar measure to impeach Khorram but the motion was later stopped. Fourteen MPs called for the resignation of the minister following a series of air tragedies, the worst of which caused the death of 119 people earlier in that month when a Tupolev airliner crashed near the western city of Khorramabad, in Lorestan province.

Iran's aviation fleet is mostly comprised of US-made Boeings that have been purchased before the 1979 Islamic Revolution but have already outlived their serviceable life by at least 20 years.

After the US imposed trade embargoes against the Islamic Republic, Iran has not been able to successfully maintain the planes fit for flying. This has forced the Civil Aviation Organization (CAO) to turn to Russian planes.

The CAO, however, came under strong pressure after most of the air mishaps in domestic flights have involved Russian-made planes.

In May 2002, a Russian-built Yak-40 plane on its way to northern Iran from Tehran crashed with 30 people on board, including the then roads and transport minister, Rahman Dadman.

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