ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi on Sunday expressed concerns about the work of the Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC) and its mechanism which have been approved ahead of the parliamentary elections in May.
Speaking to reporters during a press conference, the Iraqi Prime Minister explained that the mechanism agreed on by the Council of Representatives for the operation and work of the IHEC was incorrect. However, he promised improvement of the electoral commission’s work.
Asked about the integrity of the upcoming elections, the Iraqi Prime Minister said he did not want “to slander” the mechanism adopted to establish the IHEC.
The IHEC’s “selection process was wrong, but the Parliament insisted on moving forward with it,” Abadi stated.
The Iraqi Prime Minister noted it was the Council of Ministers’ responsibility to protect the election process and provide a stable atmosphere as well as logistical support, adding there was “nothing 100 percent independent.”
“It is part of our responsibility to support the IHEC and guarantee fair elections,” Abadi told reporters. “We will follow-up on the commission’s procedures and suggest improvements.”
Abadi hoped the election process would end safely, emphasizing that “the government supports such a process.”
The safety and fairness of the elections, he said, is in the hands of the people, the electoral commission, and the companies responsible for the electoral devices.
“Regarding appeals about the election process, it is the responsibility of the judicial authorities,” he stated.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany