Iran’s state-run media has begun to acknowledge that the economic crisis there is solely down to the officials’ corruption and mismanagement. Even if they still tried to downplay the true scale of the problem, this just goes to show that the officials are lying when they claim that sanctions are the real issue.
The Vatan-e Emrooz daily admitted on Monday, citing data from the Parliamentary Research Center, that the poverty line for 4-person households increased 165% (1.7 million tomans to 4.5 million tomans) in the period 2013-2019 and is estimated to have risen again in 2020 because of the coronavirus.
The paper wrote: “Absolute poverty can be defined as the inability to achieve the minimum standard of living, and in fact, absolute poverty is the lack of access to subsistence standards in society. This is due to the difference in the cost of living in different regions.”
The Vatan-e Emrooz then went on to talk about how per capita income in Iran has dropped considerably over the last eight years, reaching just 4,870,000 tomans in 2019.
Meanwhile, the ILNA News Agency wrote that 19 million Iranians are living in slums that lack sanitation, which shows just how bad poverty must be. This, despite Iran being one of the richest countries in the world.
Former Urban Development Minister Abbas Akhundi told the Jahan-e Sanat paper that Iranians are “trapped” in poverty because of “continuous and rising inflation” over the past 50 years.
The Jam-e Jam daily wrote Monday that “mismanagement has hurt the country’s economy more than sanctions”, as displayed in the indictment of Former Central Bank Chief Waliullah Seif for the embezzlement of embezzled $30 billion and 60 tons of gold reserves.
The paper went on to say that Seif was not acting on his own behalf and that his case included many high-ranking officials, including President Hassan Rouhani.
It wrote: “The foreign exchange policy in the country goes directly to the President and the Central Bank Chief, and if there is any disruption in this regard, according to experts, these two people should be held accountable. Issues such as determining bank interest rates and large cases of currency microeconomics are done with the coordination of the President and by order of the Central Bank’s chief.”
While the Mostaghel daily questioned how presidential candidates could justify spending billions of tomans on their campaigns at a time when so many are impoverished.
They wrote: “In a situation where people are facing economic problems, how do some presidential candidates spend hundreds of billions of tomans on advertising? What are the factors that have caused a presidential candidate in Iran to reach hundreds of billions of tomans of wealth and spend it on his campaign?”
On May 10, Kayhan which is affiliated with the regime’s supreme leader Ali Khamenei, while attacking the regime’s president about the dire situation in the country wrote:
“Yesterday, the President said: ‘We did not allow the events (famine) of 1917 to 1919 to be repeated … Similar statements have been made by Mr. Jahangiri before.’”
Then this outlet added: “What evil were they supposed to bring to the country that they did not bring? Did they not auction the country’s money resources, and did they not shut down hundreds of factories? Yes, they did.
“Did they not serve thirty billion dollars of the foreign exchange reserves to rent-seekers in golden plates? Yes, they did.
“Did they not engage the country with the import of wheat, meat, poultry, etc? Yes they did. Did they not break the records in inflation, stagnation and the Gini coefficient (class gap) and the devastating liquidity? Yes, they did.
“Did they not reduce the national fixed per capita income from above 6 million tomans in 2013 to below 5 million tomans? Yes, they did.”