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Sports Minister to Be Introduced This Week

Service : Politic
TEHRAN, May 16 (ICANA) –A after three months of legal battle, finally Iran's government bowed to the Majlis (Parliament) on implementing a law already passed by the latter on the formation of Ministry of Sports and Youth.
Monday, May 16, 2011 11:02:18 PM
Sports Minister to Be Introduced This Week

In January 2011, the Majlis ratified a bill on the merging of two organizations which had already been established, including the National Youth Organization and the Physical Education Organization. Now one ministry titled the Ministry of Sports and Youth is to be shaped from the two organizations.

The agreement is almost predicted to remove the chaos and financial problems Iranians sports are coping with. It coincided with first World Taekwondo championship in the men's category won by Iran during the 2011 competitions in Gyeongju, South Korea.

In the past 20 editions of the tournament, South Korea had claimed all the previous championship titles and now Iranian athletes have enjoyed such glory in a country which is the cradle of Taekwondo.

The recent measure taken by the Majlis-government is likely to free Iranian sports federations from the earlier restrictions and put it on a new launching pad for further developments.

The plan however provoked opposing voices. Iranian sports federations rejected the proposed ministry and called it damaging for the progress of Iranian athletics.

Moreover, the ex-deputy of the Physical Education Organization Sa'eed Faeqi had told Khabar Online that throughout the world, sports federations are run by nongovernmental bodies and forming a new ministry is against the government's development plans.

On the other hand, some analysts believe that if sports affairs are managed by a ministry it will benefit athletics in the country, and officials will be responsible for possible defeats in regional and international arenas.

It's not apparent how only one day after President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had announced his decision on writing a letter to the Supreme Leader of the Islamic revolution Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on reasons behind the government's opposition to the establishment of Ministry of Sports and Youth, his move was canceled and a new decision has been made public.

However it's the starting point for establishing a ministry which will be able to back Iranian sports federations, which are already beset by financial problems and are impotent in providing financial sources. The news on the electricity and water cuts [for outstanding debts] of these federations is highlighted by the sports media everyday.

There are two absolutely different stories on the governments retreat from submitting a letter to the top Islamic republic's official about mediating on sports ministry dispute.

The first which is rooted in politics refers to the negative impact the reports on writing this letter could create, since the two top legislative bodies of the country, the Majlis and the Guardian Council had already stressed on the execution of the paseed law on the establishment of sports ministry. That led the government to back off from submitting such letter.

Based on the second story an important session held between the council of vise presidents and two senior sports officials of the Physical Education Organization and National Olympic Committee of the Islamic Republic of Iran. At the meeting both parties signaled the perplexity of various sport disciplines in the way of being qualified for the incoming London 2012 Olympics.

On the other hand, last Thursday the lawmakers ratified a bill and took a huge step which helps the government to implement subsidy reform plan more conveniently. Although even some lawmakers involved in planning the sports ministry including Omidvar Rezaei and Ahmad Nateq Nouri have indicated to some errors in the passed bill, by taking such initiative the Majlis facilitated a path for a better interaction of the legislative and executive branches of the country.

When the government decided on forming the new ministry, speculations on the appointment of sports minister have been strengthened. Although before the new Iranian year (started on March 21) many possible candidates were possible to take the post, but informed sources maintain that many of these candidates have lost their chances.

Probably the province governor of Khorasan Mahmoud Salahi is no longer a powerful nominee for the post of Sports and Youth Minister. A member of Office for the Women's Affairs who was introduced to the administration by Fatemeh Alia aides, Mahmoud Salahi has not a good chance since the Majlis has insisted on the priority of acts related to sports and introducing a figure who is familiar with sports affairs.

The candidate in the circle of Esfandiar Rahim Mashaei, the controversial Ahmadinejad's chief of staff would be Reza Mousavi who is unlikely to win a vote of confidence from the Parliament. Therefore, among all possible candidates, the incumbent head of the Physical Education Organization Ali Saeedlou has the best qualification for running the Sports and Youth Ministry.

Although he made a number of criticisms against the lawmakers, but due to the glorious win of Iran's team at the 20th edition of World Taekwondo Championships and the promises he made on getting success at the London Olympics 2012 which would evoke Iran's victory in Gyeongju, Saeedlou has the best chance to be the first Minister of the Sports and Youth. (khabaronline)

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