ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The formation of a new government like the previous one will not resolve the “very dangerous” state the country is experiencing, Iraqi Vice-President Ayad Allawi said on Saturday.
Allawi’s repeated warnings come at a time when Iraqi politicians are trying to form a new government cabinet following the country’s national elections on May 12.
As the winning parties plan to negotiate the formation of a new government, anger mounts in central and southern Iraq with people protesting a lack of public services and high unemployment in the oil-rich country.
Iraqis, especially in the south, have long protested poor services the government provides. However, today’s country-wide demonstrations have backing from Iraq’s top Shia cleric Ali al-Sistani, who recently warned the protests could expand, become more complicated, and, as a result, more challenging to handle.
The Shia cleric has called for the formation of a new government “as soon as possible” to address corruption and poor basic services in the country.
“Iraq is going through a very dangerous stage that threatens its present and future, which requires swift and firm action that puts its interest above all other considerations and interests as well as change the path of the current political process,” Allawi’s office said in a statement.
He warned that “the formation of a government like its predecessors will not be the solution.”
“Decisions that do not address the roots of the problems have contributed to the current situation and will further complicate the situation [in the future] and widely increase the tension.”
An alternative is to form a government that sets priorities and renormalizes the situation with strong visions and decisions that will bring safety and stability to Iraq, Allawi suggested.
According to the Iraqi politician, the new government has to have “the ability to make necessary decisions and implement them.”
Iraq remains high on Transparency International’s Corruption Index as widespread fraud and mismanagement in state institutions are the most significant challenges the country has faced since the fall of the former regime nearly 15 years ago.
In 2017, Iraq ranked 166 out of 176 as the most corrupt country in the world.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany