In Rudaw 

President Salih signs Iraq election reforms into law

Iraqi President Barham Salih on Thursday officially signed recent electoral reforms into law, dividing provinces into smaller voting constituencies for the 2021 election.

“The law was passed after a long debate. The reform of the electoral law was a national demand to secure Iraqis’ right to choose their representatives without fear of forgery, manipulation and the exertion of pressure on voters,” said Salih.

“I call upon all state institutions to swiftly fulfill the required conditions for conducting early fair and free elections,” he added. “Electoral corruption is a serious scourge that threatens the peace and stability of our community as well as the country’s economic viability.”

Iraq’s Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi announced in July that the country’s next parliamentary elections would take place on June 6, 2021, a year earlier than scheduled.

The electoral commission said in August it would be ready to hold early elections in June provided the government and parliament meet certain demands, including passing a new electoral law and allocating a budget for the vote.

“Iraqis have the right to enjoy the wealth of their country and to live a life of freedom and dignity,” Salih added. “We have built a powerful and capable state that adequately represents every sector of Iraqi society and guarantees each a peaceful life.”

The last parliament session on the reforms was on October 29, when MPs voted on constituency divisions in Kirkuk province.

In each constituency, three to five seats are up for grabs for candidates, Aram Balataiy, spokesperson of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) parliamentary bloc confirmed to Rudaw. Source