ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Iraqi Prime Minister Spokesperson Saad al-Hadithi on Monday said only the Federal Supreme Court has the right to cancel the results of the May 12 parliamentary election and implement a redo.
“This is a matter for the Federal Court and not for the executive branch or any other entity,” Hadithi told Reuters in response to a question on Iraqi PM Haider al-Abadi’s position on Parliament Speaker Salim al-Jabouri’s call for a new election.
Jabouri called for a repeat of the election on Sunday after a fire went through a warehouse that the Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC) uses to store the ballot boxes.
He said the incident was “a planned crime aimed at hiding cases of manipulation and falsification of votes and deceiving the Iraqi people and changing their will and choice.”
Abadi’s office issued a statement on Sunday following the blaze, vowing to pursue the “terrorist gangs” that try to tamper with the security situation of the country and the elections.
He also directed all governorates’ operations commands to tighten security measures and increase personnel at electoral commission warehouses across the country.
Iraqi Vice-President Ayad Allawi, meanwhile, called for a referendum to decide on whether to approve the results of the May 12 elections or redo the polls.
Parliament, in a majority vote on Wednesday, mandated the country-wide manual recount of the May 12 votes, froze the work of the IHEC, and assigned the commission’s work to nine judges to facilitate the recount process amid allegations of fraud and tampering of ballots.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany