‘Election is the right of citizens; no party has the right to prevent it’: Deputy Speaker Hawrami
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Kurdistan Parliament Deputy Speaker Hemin Hawrami discussed the Kurdistan Region’s upcoming elections with the Head of Erbil Liaison Office of the EU Delegation in the Kurdistan Region, Marie Paret, on Wednesday.
Hawrami received Paret at his office in the parliament, where they discussed the latest political development in Kurdistan Region and Iraq.
Hawrami briefed Paret on the upcoming parliamentary elections in the Kurdistan Region. He emphasized the importance of holding regional elections every four years and on time and using updated voter biometrics to maintain the democratic process in the Kurdistan Region.
“Elections and the democratic process are the right of citizens, and no party has the right to prevent this right,” Hawrami said.
Regarding the elections law, the deputy speaker underlined that “It doesn’t make sense for the political parties to call for amending the elections law every four years in light of their election results and in light of their parties’ interest.”
“The parliament work should not be halted because of the political tensions among the political parties outside the parliament,” he said. “Parliament’s institutional work should be kept away from political conflicts.”
Hawrami stressed the importance of parliament reflecting the Kurdistan Region’s “beautiful diversity” by ensuring the region’s ethnic and religious minorities are adequately represented.
“This beautiful diversity should be reflected in the parliament,” he said. “The minorities should have their say about their representation in the parliament, and we support whatever decision they make in this regard.”
At the end of the meeting, Hawrami asked for the EU’s support for the upcoming parliamentary elections in the region and to help monitor them.
The Kurdistan Region elections are scheduled for Oct. 1. The Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) and political parties representing minorities in the region support holding the elections on time. However, the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) and several smaller parties prefer delaying them.
The PUK and some other Islamic political parties call for amending the elections law and reducing the quota seats allocated for minority groups.
The KDP and the representatives of the minorities in the parliament strongly reject any reduction in the number of quota seats. They also disagree with amending the elections law because they believe it will delay the elections.
They argue that bringing the elections law back to the parliament for amendment will take far too long since it would require lengthy discussions and several sessions. Therefore, they prefer only to reactivate the elections law in its current form to hold the elections on time and delay its amendment until after the elections.