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Tarawneh elected House speaker for third term

By Raed Omari - Nov 15,2015 - Last updated at Nov 15,2015

AMMAN — Deputy Atef Tarawneh was elected on Sunday by his peers as the Lower House speaker for a third one-year term.

Tarawneh’s (Homeland list) election was a landslide win, garnering 100 votes, with 19, 10 and 8 ballots cast for his rivals Assaf Shobaki (Amman, 4th District), Fawaz Zu'bi (Irbid, 4th District) and Hind Fayez (Central Badia) respectively.

A total of 148 deputies, out of 149, participated in the vote; 12 ballots were cancelled as they were found blank.

The 150-strong House is one MP short after Eteiwi Majali (Karak, 2nd District) passed away in October. The Independent Elections Commission is scheduled to hold a by-election to fill the vacant seat.

Deputy Mustafa Amawi (Islamic Centrist Party list) was elected as first deputy speaker, winning 71 votes in a second round of voting. 

MP Khamis Atiyeh, Amawi's only opponent in the second round, was elected by acclamation as second deputy speaker. 

MP Abdul Karim Dughmi chaired the House’s first session as he has had a continuous presence in Parliament since 1989, in line with the new amendments to Lower House by-laws, under which the deputy with the longest membership presides over the first meeting.

Previously, the debut meeting used to be chaired by the oldest deputy.

Delivering a speech after being named speaker, Tarawneh pledged continued cooperation with the Senate and government to serve the nation and achieve the envisioned reform.

He also said that the draft elections law and the 2016 state budget bill will be the main priority of the House during its third ordinary session.

While deliberating the state budget bill, the speaker said MPs will try to link it to an economic reform plan aimed at increasing benefits and enhancing the efficiency of public finance.

Tarawneh also suggested the formation of a legislative/technical committee tasked with revisiting all economic laws with the aim of enhancing the performance of the national economy.

Following His Majesty King Abdullah’s Speech from the Throne, the Upper House convened and elected Marouf Bakhit as the Senate president’s first deputy and Samir Rifai as the second deputy.

Senators Wajih Azaizeh and Nawal Faouri were elected as the Senate president’s assistants.

 

Newly appointed Senate President Faisal Fayez opened the session with a speech in which he pledged genuine partnership with the Lower House and the government to serve the country’s higher interests and achieve the King’s vision, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported. 

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