From the Times of Israel:
Lapid calls on PM not to appoint Shas leader as interior minister
Yesh Atid head says Aryeh Deri not fit to handle public coffers given criminal record; Netanyahu gears up for tough coalition talks
In a post on Facebook on Saturday, Lapid wrote: “Are you comfortable with the idea of giving a senior ministry (I understand it’s the interior ministry) — which oversees billions of shekels in budget funds — to a man in whose conviction the judges wrote? This is not an isolated failure on the part of a young politician who was recently exposed to power, but a person who consistently led a life based on corruption.”
“Do not abandon the public coffers to [such] a man, Mr. Prime Minister, this money belongs to all of us,” Lapid wrote.
On Thursday, a petition posted to the Internet called on Netanyahu to refrain from accepting Deri into his government and to prevent him from reassuming a ministerial position, owing to his criminal record.
Deri was the head of Shas until he was convicted in 1999 of accepting $155,000 in bribes while running the Interior Ministry, and served 22 months in prison. He returned to the party in 2012 and challenged then-party head Eli Yishai for the faction’s top spot.
A power-sharing agreement that created a leadership troika of Deri, Yishai and Ariel Atias was short-lived, and Deri returned to lead the party in 2013.
Yishai quit the party in the lead-up to the 2015 elections, but his rival party Yachad failed to achieve the minimal number of votes in Tuesday’s elections to enter the Knesset.
Shas, meanwhile, garnered 7 seats and Netanyahu seems set on forming a six-party right-wing/ultra-Orthodox coalition, comprising Likud (30 seats), Kulanu (10 seats), Jewish Home (8 seats), Shas, Yisrael Beytenu (6 seats) and United Torah Judaism (6 seats), giving him 67 seats in the 120-member Knesset.
As Netanyahu gears up for negotiations to build a ruling coalition, speculations abound on who will get what ministry or chairmanship.
It’s been suggested that Deri would be offered the interior ministry.
I don’t like that Deri is allowed to be involved in politics, far less be the leader of a party, even worse as a potential minister. To give him, a man labelled as leading a life based on corruption, access to public funds, that is more than a mistake. It’s also criminal.
Read the whole thing, here.