CDJ leader Barham Salih is received at KIU headquarters by Salahadin Bahadin in Erbil on May 14, 2018. Photo: Mohammed Shwani | Rudaw
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region — Six political parties from the Kurdistan Region objecting the result of the recent Iraqi parliamentary election jointly expressed support for the parliament’s decision to hold a nationwide manual recount.
“We declare our support for the important and historic step taken by the Iraqi parliament to respond to voters and political parties over electronic fraud and hooliganism targeting peoples’ votes, and tampering with the result of the election held on May 12 in Iraq and the Kurdistan Region,” the group stated on Thursday.
The Coalition for Democracy and Justice (CDJ), the Change Movement (Gorran), Kurdistan Islamic Union (KIU), the Islamic Group of Kurdistan (Komal), the Communist Party of Kurdistan, and the Islamic Movement of Kurdistan (IKM), have all protested May 12 election results and accused the ruling parties of rigging the election outcome.
“We call on the relevant legislative bodies of Iraq to play their full role to return rights to their rightful owners,” the statement adds.
Earlier on Thursday, Iraq’s High Judiciary Council approved parliament’s amendment to the electoral law.
The Iraqi parliament with a quorum passed a bill to recount 100 percent of ballots manually, cancel IDP and diaspora votes, and the Kurdistan Region’s elections on May 10 for security personnel. The bill also removes the current independent electoral commissioners, and replaces them with nine judges.
The judicial council called for a meeting to be held on Sunday “to nominate the judges who will be appointed to carry out the tasks of the commissioner’s council and supervising the manual recount”, read a statement from the judicial council posted on Thursday.
The meeting also aims to nominate judges who would be appointed to head the commission’s provincial offices.
The six parties have alleged voter fraud took place in the Kurdistan Region. They have previously called for the election results to be annulled and for a re-vote or recount to take place.
Gorran, which received five seats, in the election has been at the center of the complaints. It won eight in 2014. Upstart New Generation won four seats. KIU, CDJ, and Komal each won two seats.
The Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) took 25 seats, followed by the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) — historically the two largest parties from the Kurdistan Region.
Khasro Goran, the head of KDP's election office, told Rudaw
what happened on Wednesday in the Iraqi parliament “was a violation of the
constitution and the law.”
He added that the KDP doesn’t oppose a nationwide manual
recount of all the votes, but is against the revoking of early voting by the
Kurdish security forces and votes of the IDPs.
“This is a political decision because there was no problem with
the early voting. If there was a problem somewhere, a manual recount can be
done in that place. This won’t affect KDP seats in Erbil, Sulaimani and Duhok,
but it is not good to violate the rights of the voters. That is why we will
appeal this decision,” he detailed.
Last updated at 2:08 p.m.