ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) has asked for the posts of the Kurdistan Region’s deputy prime minister and parliamentary speaker and rejected the idea of having two deputies for the post of the premiership, a party official said on Saturday.
A delegation of the leading Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) on Saturday visited Sulaimani and met with PUK leaders to discuss the formation of the new cabinet of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG).
The KDP delegates are also scheduled to meet with Gorran (Change) leaders to discuss the same topic with the movement.
“If the PUK participates in a meaningful way in the new government, it will be a positive thing for the success of the government whose leader is KDP,” Latif Nerwayi, a spokesperson for the Central Council of the PUK, told Kurdistan 24.
“In the previous government, key ministerial posts were given to some parties that should have been given to the PUK because the PUK didn’t run away from responsibilities [didn’t leave the government].”
Nerwayi stated that the PUK has officially asked the KDP for the two prominent posts.
In the September regional parliamentary elections, out of the total 111 seats of the parliament, the KDP won 45, the PUK 21, and Gorran secured 12, losing half of their previous seats.
Recently, a lawmaker from the Turkmen minority, Aydin Marouf, called for adding the second deputy for the post of the premiership, and one to be given to Turkmen.
The KDP has yet to officially announce its position on the idea of having two deputies for prime minister.
“It will not be a successful experience… In the previous government, there was a strong relationship between the prime minister [held by the KDP] and deputy prime minister [held by the PUK], and there is no need to have another deputy to shake this relationship. It is seen all around the world that two deputies will almost always result in problems,” Nerwayi added.
He mentioned that sometimes there might be tensions between the KDP and PUK, but the responsibilities the two parties share in terms of security, military, administration, and governing the Kurdistan Region, requires them to cooperate and overcome disputes that may arise.
Most of the previous KRG cabinets have been formed jointly by the two parties. In some, they distributed the posts equally to create a consensus to govern the semi-autonomous region together. Neither of the two parties has so far served as an opposition.
Editing by John J. Catherine