Iraqis want Barzani to be­come the next Pres­i­dent

Elec­toral Sys­tem and Re­li­gious and Eth­nic Com­pe­ti­tion

The Kurdish Globe - - FRONT PAGE - By Saadula Aqrawi

Now, in Iraq, the sit­u­a­tion of the April's elec­tion is very ex­cit­ing be­cause the po­lit­i­cal com­pe­ti­tion within the three main re­li­gious and eth­nic com­mu­ni­ties, Shi'ite Arabs, Sunni Arabs and the Kurds is quite fierce. Shi'ite Arabs will be split be­tween the Prime Min­is­ter's State of Law Coali­tion, the Sadrist Move­ment and the Is­lamic Supreme Coun­cil of Iraq. The for­mer sec­u­lar Sunni Iraqiya coali­tion will be split be­tween the par­lia­men­tary speaker's Mu­tahi­doun party, Allawi's Iraqi Na­tional Ac­cord and al-Mut­lak's Iraqi Na­tional Di­a­logue Front.

The largest par­ties on the ap­proved lists in­clude the State of Law Coali­tion, the Sadrist Move­ment, the Kur­dis­tan Demo­cratic Party and the Iraqi Na­tional Ac­cord. Sig­nif­i­cant new par­ties in­clude the for­mer mil­i­tant group and the Iraqiya Bloc, which split from the Iraqi Na­tional Ac­cord.

Par­lia­men­tary elec­tions are to be held in Iraq on 30 April. People will de­cide who will fill the 328 seats in the Coun­cil of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives which, in turn, will elect the Iraq's next Pres­i­dent and the Prime Min­is­ter. The open list form of party-list pro­por­tional rep­re­sen­ta­tion, us­ing the gov­er­norates as the con­stituen­cies, is the elec­toral sys­tem used. Seven com­pen­satory seats that were awarded at the na­tional level to those par­ties whose na­tional share of the vote wasn't re­flected in the seats won at the Gov­er­norate level have been al­lo­cated to in­di­vid­ual gov­er­norates.

Iraq was con­trolled by the dic­ta­tor Sad­dam Hus­sein who started two dev­as­tat­ing wars, the Iran-Iraq war and the Per­sian Gulf War. In the mod­ern his­tory, the rule of the Ot­toman Em­pire ended with World War I, and Iraq came to be ad­min­is­tered by the Bri­tish Man­date of Me­sopotamia Bri­tish Em­pire un­til the es­tab­lish­ment of the King­dom of Iraq in 1921. The Repub­lic of Iraq was es­tab­lished in1958. The pol­i­tics of the cur­rent Iraq is a Par­lia­men­tary sys­tem. Iraq is now a rep­re­sen­ta­tive demo­cratic repub­lic. It is a multi- party sys­tem whereby the ex­ec­u­tive power is ex­er­cised by the Prime Min­is­ter of Iraq and the leg­isla­tive by the Par­lia­ment. The Pres­i­dent of Iraq en­joys an im­por­tant sym­bolic po­si­tion with cer­tain pres­i­den­tial pow­ers.

Be­fore 2003, the Ba'ath Party ruled Iraq ruth­lessly. But the coun­try was lib­er­ated by the coali­tion forces which be­longed pri­mar­ily to the United States and the UK. The mil­i­tary forces op­er­ated un­der the um­brella of the multi­na­tional force in Iraq which was sanc­tioned by the United Na­tions Se­cu­rity Coun­cil Res­o­lu­tions no.1546 and no.1637|1637.

The Law of Ad­min­is­tra­tion by which Iraq was gov­erned was re­placed by the Tran­si­tional Pe­riod Ad­min­is­tra­tive Law. This in turn was re­placed by the per­ma­nent Con­sti­tu­tion of Iraq fol­low­ing an ap­proval in an Iraqi con­sti­tu­tion rat­i­fi­ca­tion vote in a ref­er­en­dum held on Oc­to­ber 15, 2005. A per­ma­nent 275-mem­ber Coun­cil of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives was elected in the Iraqi leg­isla­tive elec­tion in De­cem­ber 2005. The new coun­cil ini­ti­ated the for­ma­tion of the Govern­ment of Iraq for the years 2006-2010.The last elec­tions was the Iraqi par­lia­men­tary elec­tion which was held in Jan­uary 2010. Now, it is time again to elect new par­lia­men­tary rep­re­sen­ta­tives for the com­ing four years.

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