Candidates allowed to change their polling stations: IHEC

Necessary measures will be taken by the election administration to implement this change.
A citizen casting his vote in a polling station. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
A citizen casting his vote in a polling station. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)

ERBIL (Kurdistan24) - The Independent High Election Commission (IHEC) announced today that the council of commissioners has discussed a memorandum from the Office of the Chief Election Administrator regarding changes to electoral cards.

The memorandum, numbered 4735, proposed allowing candidates for the Kurdistan parliamentary elections, excluding their families, to change their polling stations to those within their nominated election areas during voter registration renewal.

Necessary measures will be taken by the election administration to implement this change.

Read More: IHEC proposes date for the KRG's parliamentary elections

Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) President Nechirvan Barzani had previously announced that the sixth session of the KRG parliamentary elections would be held on June 10.

However, a consensus among all political parties has emerged that the elections cannot be held on the initially scheduled date.

The primary reason for the postponement is the decision by the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) and various ethnic and religious communities within the Kurdistan Region to refrain from participating in the upcoming election.

This decision follows a controversial ruling by the Iraq Federal Supreme Court to annul the 11 quota seats reserved for the representation of these communities in the Kurdistan Region.

The court's decision has led to an agreement among political parties that the election cannot proceed as planned in June.

Read More: We refrain from justifying undemocratic elections: KDP Politburo

Concerns about potential manipulation or external interference in the election results have also contributed to the decision to delay the elections. Political parties agree that the elections should be postponed to ensure a fair and transparent process.

Read More: KDP doesn’t accept any illegal interference in parliamentary elections, says spox

In response to complaints filed by the affected communities, the Iraqi Supreme Federal Court (SFC) decided to allocate five of the 100 seats in the KRG parliament to these communities. Consequently, the distribution of the five reserved seats is as follows:

- Erbil: Two seats (one for Christians and one for Turkmen)

- Sulaimani: Two seats (one for Christians and one for Turkmen)

- Duhok: One seat for Armenians

The remaining 95 seats will be allocated as general seats.

Previously, the Iraqi Supreme Court had decided to reduce the total number of seats in the KRG parliament to 100, with the IHEC distributing them among the provinces: Erbil (34 seats), Sulaimani (38 seats), Duhok (25 seats), and Halabja (3 seats).

This redistribution and the decision to delay the elections highlight the ongoing complexities and challenges facing the electoral process in the Kurdistan Region.