ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan 24) – The Iraqi President has rejected the 2018 national budget law, approved by the Iraqi Parliament after a majority vote, due to the presence of constitutional violations in the bill.
Iraqi President Fuad Masum has refused to approve the 2018 national budget law and returned it to the Iraqi Parliament for amendment, the President’s Media Office said in a statement on Tuesday.
“[Masum] decided to return the national budget law for 2018, approved by the Council of Representatives on March 3, to the Parliament to review it at the constitutional, legal, and financial levels,” the statement said.
The statement revealed that the budget law contained 31 points which violate the applied legislation.
“The return of the budget law comes after legal and financial advisers studied and checked the law in detail to find the constitutional, legal, and financial violations and identified the articles that need to be corrected before the final approval,” the President’s Office stated.
In a press conference on Tuesday, Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani welcomed Masum’s decision to return the budget law to the Parliament.
“We had urged the Iraqi MPs not to approve the budget in its current draft,” Prime Minister Barzani noted.
The Prime Minister added that the Kurdistan Region had faced a great deliberate injustice in the budget law which does not agree with the constitution that defines the Region as part of Iraq.
Iraq’s Parliament approved the country’s controversial 2018 budget bill in the absence of Kurdish politicians, who boycotted the session.
Baghdad reduced the Kurdistan Region’s share of the federal budget to roughly 12 percent, a significant drop from its previous 17 percent allocation, and did not allocate any budget for the Peshmerga forces, the primary reason for representatives from the Region to protest the bill.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany