[Former president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, in his trip to Khuzestan, talks about people’s problems there, while criticizing the government’s inadequate ways of handling the problems there. This is a part of Ahmadinejad’s campaign for his former vice president Hamid Baghaei, who has announced his candidacy for the upcoming presidential elections, but might be disqualified by the Guardian Council. Ahmadinejad implicitly threatens the leader, saying he won’t remain silent any longer.]
Ahmadinejad implicitly threatens the leader: I have not created any obstacles for you so far. But by God’s grace, I will speak up from now on, so that it becomes clear who is who in this country.He mentions the problems in Khuzestan, while criticizing Rouhani’s government: Go to Khuzestan. There are problems there. In Tehran, we saw it from TV, from different networks. How is it possible? There is dust, there is power outage, the telephones are cut off. How come? You have not lived here to understand what is going on.
He refers to Rouhani’s saying that what is happening in the country is partly “divine punishment”: Divine punishment is your existence! Imam [Khomeini] said ‘be from those who have experienced people’s pain and suffering.’
Ahmadinejad criticizes the way of life of officials in Tehran: It is obvious when someone lives in a 5,000-meter villa in northern Tehran with best weather, how can he know what it means to live like a tenant? How can he know what not having bread for your wife and children means? He carries around 50 million tomans as pocket money with himself.
He questions how some officials have made their wealth: I wish the wealth that some people have was the result of their work. You got that position, and then suddenly you became rich. Suddenly. Where did you get that money?
Ahmadinejad sarcastically criticizes the way the crisis is handled: Well, people gave you these positions. People elected you. And you should accompany the people. Come and stand beside the people, and roll up your sleeves. Remote control! Remote control!
He describes the inequality in distribution of money and budget among provinces in Iran: I remember it was the beginning of the 9th government. They said, ‘there are problems that must be solved.’ I said we should eventually set aside a percentage of oil revenue for provinces, right? He As he said, that is not right if the other side is prosperous, and in this side, people are in need of their bread, and are unemployed. They said no. Only 2%. And there were so many complications about that very 2% that nobody got any of it. I do not want to give you any numbers. But I say you should put enough money so that Khuzestan people become happy. And can feel it.