Rabbi David Yosef, the son of world renown Sephardic spiritual leader Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, sharply criticized those involved in the "battle of succession" of the Shas political party, while his father is still battling for his life in an Israeli hospital.
"I do not know how people in this situation are not ashamed to busy themselves with these issues at this time. To engage in fighting over issues of inheritance at this point in time is very ugly," Rabbi David said in an interview with Army Radio.
He further slammed the controversy as "disgusting" and "inappropriate."
"I hope those who engaging in this come to their senses and return to their prayers and not arguments about who takes over," Rabbi David said.
Rabbi Ovadia Yosef founded the Shas movement in 1984 with four other Torah scholars to represent the interests of religiously observant Sephardic and Mizrahi Jewish communities. Shas is known for its Sephardic Jewish school system and its affiliated political faction. Now that Rabbi Ovadia Yosef's condition has left him on a respirator in the ICU, there has been bickering among those who wish to inherit the leadership of the political party.
Speaking of his 93-year-old father's condition, Rabbi David said that "Rabbi Chaim Ovadia Yosef made it through the night and his condition is stable, but is still rocky and very hard." As is customary in cases of life-threatening illnesses, the name "Chaim" (meaning "life" in Hebrew) has been added to Rabbi Yosef's name, and his family have asked people to continue praying for Ovadia Chaim ben Georgia.
A spokesman for Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital has announced that Rabbi Ovadia Yosef's condition remains serious to critical, but continues to be stable.
The Torah scholar's medical staff noted that during the course of the Saturday night several positive changes took place. The staff said, "this morning, the attending medical staff will meet to determine further treatment. The Rabbi is in the Intensive Care Unit in Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital in Jerusalem."