Iraqi Speaker Mohammad al-Halbousi discussed this week with heads of parliamentary blocs the need to approve changes to the new electoral law and prepare the necessary conditions to hold the elections.
Halbousi met with heads of parliamentary blocs and the legal committee in the presence of First Deputy Hassan al-Kaabi to discuss the final version of the electoral law, which was approved by the legislature last year.
The meeting discussed the electoral districts, creating the necessary conditions for holding the polls, and the need for the government to provide full support to the Independent High Electoral Commission to enable it to hold free, and fair elections, a statement from Halbousi’s office said.
The Speaker also met Friday with head of the Sadrist Movement’s politburo Nassar Al-Rubaie.
They stressed the need to expedite the approval of the electoral law’s final text.
Late last year, Iraq's parliament approved the new electoral law, a key demand of protesters to have fair elections. However, an agreement should be finalized on setting the number and geographic map of electoral districts, before the law is sent to the President for approval.
“The electoral law has been approved by parliament. However, the issue of electoral districts has been postponed for discussion at a later stage,” said MP Yehya al-Muhammadi, head of the parliamentary legal committee.
He told Asharq Al-Awsat that Article 15 of the law stipulates that a governorate should be divided into several electoral districts.
Muhammadi said that Halbousi discussed with heads of parliamentary blocs and the legal committee the steps that should be taken after the approval of the electoral law.
“They also discussed the ability of the government to hold the parliamentary elections, including the issue of limiting weapons to the state and the UN role in monitoring the polls,” he said.
Prime Minister Mustafa Kadhimi, who took office on May 7, has repeatedly said that holding legislative polls is his top priority.
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