ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) - The Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) on Wednesday officially announced they had elected Barham Salih as their nominee for the post of Iraqi President.
The spokesperson of the PUK, Saadi Ahmed Pira, in a press conference stated that his party’s leadership, by majority vote, was nominating Salih as their candidate.
Pira also mentioned that Salih, in a letter addressed to the PUK leadership, had expressed his readiness to rejoin the party he left last year.
Salih was the Deputy Secretary General of the PUK, but due to the internal turmoil, namely over the absence of the party’s late leader, Jalal Talabani, he left the party in Sep. 2017 to form his own – the Coalition for Democracy and Justice (CDJ), which won two seats in Iraq’s May 12 national election.
Iraq continues to follow its traditional system of power-sharing where the speaker of parliament is a Sunni Arab while the Prime Minister is picked from the Shia majority, and the President is a Kurd.
Since 2006, the post of the Iraqi President has been given to the PUK based on agreements with the leading Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), but this time, the KDP has expressed a desire to take the post.
The PUK still requires the approval of the KDP to secure enough votes in the Iraqi Parliament for Salih to become the President of the country.
Editing by Nadia Riva