Deputy ministers? 'No need to have people with titles'

UTJ faction demands party back down from demands for positions for each MK, focus on problems facing haredi community.

Haim Lev,

Deputy Health Minister Yakov Litzman and Deputy Education Minister Meir Porush
Deputy Health Minister Yakov Litzman and Deputy Education Minister Meir Porush
Hadas Parush/FLASH90

Thirty members of the UTJ's "Shlomei Emunim" faction signed a letter demanding that the party's Agudat Yisrael faction demand significant positions in the new government and solve the problems facing the haredi community.

In the letter, the signatories explained that receiving positions with no influence would be "a disaster for haredi Jewry" and suggested that UTJ compromise on their demand to for deputy minister positions in cases where there is a minister above the deputy, other than in the case of Deputy Health Minister Yakov Litzman.

"In recent days we heard reports regarding the coalition negotiations, as well as the indicated trend. According to these reports, we would receive a large number of deputy [ministers], committee chairmen, etc., to allow each of our people to be 'a person with a title,'" the letter read.

"We would like to clarify: This would be a disaster for haredi Jewry. Your job in the Knesset is not to receive titles and pointless positions, but to strengthen the true points of power for the sake of the community who sent you.

"We demand that Agudat Yisrael insist on receiving significant key positions, including as deputy minister without a minister above them, in the ministries relevant for solving the haredi community's problems. We will say clearly, a deputy minister with a minister above him lacks all significant influence and certainly cannot change policies."

The letter also detailed the problems facing the haredi community: "We do not need to mention again the array of problems we are dealing with: Educational institutions, local authorities, the housing crisis, the inflexibility of government office, arbitrary ways of handling things and blocking budgets for institutions, illogical bureaucracy, and many many more. It's time we had people to turn to who have teeth and authority. The current situation, in which we come as beggars to representatives of other parties, is untenable."

"You have in your hands the power - granted to you with your great achievement in the elections - to change the situation," the letter concluded.




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