KABUL - The lower house of parliament (Wolesi Jirga) on Saturday gave a vote of confidence to President Hamid Karzai's picks for ministers of defense and interior, as well as spy chief.
The Wolesi Jirga voted for Gen. Bismillah Mohammadi as defense minister, Ghulam Mujtaba Patang as interior minister and Asadullah Khalid as National Directorate of Security (NDS) head.
However, the lawmakers rejected the presidential nominee for the minister of border and tribal affairs, Haji Azizullah Din Mohammad, who was a campaigner for Karzai during the last presidential election in eastern Nangarhar province.
He has also served as the governor of Kabul and Nangarhar.
Of the 241 legislators present during the special session, 124 voted in favor of Mohammadi, while 98 opposed his nomination. Eleven ballots were declared invalid.
Gen. Patang, former deputy minister of interior affairs, won 129 votes, with 92 MPs going against him. Eleven votes were found blank.
Similarly, 143 members endorsed and 87 rejected former Kandahar governor Khalid's nomination as NDS head. Eleven of the votes were found invalid.
On the other hand, Din Mohammad could get only 117 votes, four short of the required 121. As many as 108 MPs voted against his nomination.
On Wednesday, First Vice-President Mohammad Qasim Fahim introduced nominees to the lower house. On Sept. 2, Karzai nominated Mohammadi, the former interior minister, as defense minister to replace Abdul Rahim Wardak.
Both Mohammadi and Wardak were ousted by parliament for failing to prevent cross-border attacks from Pakistan. (Pajhwok)