Abadi Surprises By Choice Of Left-Field Kurd As Oil Minister

Iraq’s Prime Minister Haidar al-‘Abadi presented parliament with a new proposed cabinet on 31 March.

Though mostly comprised of technocratic figures the list held a number of surprises, including the left-field nomination of the little-known Kurdish academic Nazar Salim Doski Numan as Oil Minister, following the announcemebt last week by incumbent ‘Adil ‘Abd al-Mahdi that he had submitted his resignation – although he remains in office.

Mr ‘Abadi’s proposed 15-member cabinet features 13 changes, with just the defense and interior ministers retaining their positions. Parliament says it requires 10 days to review Mr ‘Abadi’s submissions.

The prime minister’s nominee to head the Oil Ministry has only limited energy experience as a professional geologist. He has spent the last 10 years working at Iraqi Kurdistan’s relatively minor University of Duhok. Kurdish media outlet Rudaw reports he previously taught at the University of Mosul and received his PhD from the University of Sheffield in Britain in 1970. (CONTINUED - 1192 WORDS)