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Jordanian Parliament Chooses PM for the First Time - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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Jordanian Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour, gestures with his finger, showing the press the voting ink on his finger after he casts his vote at a polling station during the first hours of the Jordanian Parliamentary elections, in Al-Salt, Jordan, Wednesday Jan. 23, 2013. (AP)

Jordanian Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour, gestures with his finger, showing the press the voting ink on his finger after he casts his vote at a polling station during the first hours of the Jordanian Parliamentary elections, in Al-Salt, Jordan, Wednesday Jan. 23, 2013. (AP)

Amman, Asharq Al-Awsat—The Jordanian parliament yesterday backed King Abdullah’s caretaker Prime Minister to form a new Cabinet, the first time in Hashemite kingdom’s history that the legislature rather than the king has decided who will head the government.

The Jordanian King reappointed Abdullah Ensour as Prime Minister after canvassing members of a new parliament elected in January, officials said.

King Abdullah previously hand-picked his prime ministers without consulting parliament. Ensour, an economist educated in the United States and France, who is not tainted with corruption allegations, was nominated by the majority of parliamentarians.
According to a government official, Ensour will name his Cabinet this week, ahead of a regional tour by U.S. President Barack Obama that includes a stopover in Jordan.

Once the Cabinet is sworn in by the king, it will seek a parliamentary vote of confidence necessary to install it, said the official, speaking anonymously as he was not allowed to comment on matters related to cabinet formation.

The monarch commended Ensour in a letter of designation for his performance in five months in office, saying he was well-equipped to steer the country through regional and domestic turbulence.

“You have been selfless in putting the higher national interest above any consideration in facing these critical challenges that Jordan faces,” the monarch wrote.

Abdullah also said the new Cabinet should target the government bureaucracy, known for nepotism, corruption and inefficiency. “We also want a white revolution in the public sector to improve its performance and skills, ensure transparency and better service to citizens,” he said.

Asharq Al-Awsat

Asharq Al-Awsat

Asharq Al-Awsat is the world’s premier pan-Arab daily newspaper, printed simultaneously each day on four continents in 14 cities. Launched in London in 1978, Asharq Al-Awsat has established itself as the decisive publication on pan-Arab and international affairs, offering its readers in-depth analysis and exclusive editorials, as well as the most comprehensive coverage of the entire Arab world.

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