ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) - The two top Kurdish parties of the autonomous Kurdistan Region on Thursday announced engineer Tayib Jabar Amin as their sole candidate to be the new Governor of the disputed province of Kirkuk.
It comes after months of disagreements between the two parties, and it had been the source of gridlock in negotiations between the two parties.
Amin’s candidacy for the post of the governorship was presented during a press conference held by the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) spokesperson, Mahmoud Mohammed, and member of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), Hakim Qadir Hamajan in Sulaimani.
It was announced one day after the formation of the new Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) headed by Prime Minister Masrour Barzani.
Reaching an agreement on a joint candidate has been one of the key issues between the two parties regarding Kirkuk given their differences on how to normalize the situation in the oil-rich and ethnically diverse province since it fell to the hands of the Iraqi government in the wake of the Kurdistan Region’s referendum on independence late 2017.
Amin is the sole candidate for the post and comes from the Brayati (Brotherhood) list of the Kirkuk Provincial Council (KPC), which is the largest bloc led by the KDP and PUK, occupying 26 seats out of a total of 41.
During the press conference, Mohammed noted there is a joint committee to discuss normalizing the situation in Kirkuk with other components in the province and the federal government of Iraq in Baghdad.
The candidate is an engineer born in Kirkuk in 1954. He finished school there and graduated in engineering at the University of Sulaimani in 1976.
From 1978 until 1992, he served as a public employee in Sulaimani’s Road and Infrastructure Department as an engineer. Amin served as the KRG’s Deputy Minister of Housing and Construction from 1992 until 1997.
He is one of the founders of the Kurdistan Engineers’ Union (KEU) established in 1992. He was the deputy head of the KEU from 1992 until 2001. Later, he became the head of the KEU starting from 2001 until 2003.
Amin has published several books on poetry, construction, and essays. He is a member of both the Kurdistan and Iraq’s writers’ unions.
Editing by Nadia Riva