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Iraqi MPs File Complaints against Two Ministers

Iraqi MPs File Complaints against Two Ministers

Sunday, 20 January, 2019 - 09:30
Iraqi parliament in Baghdad, Iraq, Sept. 3, 2018 (AP Photo/Karim Kadim)
Baghdad - Hamza Mustafa
Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi has a number of days left of the 100 days set to begin implementing his government's program, meanwhile, a number of MPs targeted the (incomplete) government for lacking defense, interior and justice ministers.

The Iraqi parliament resumed its meetings for discussing the budget of 2019 as well as few bills before the end of the first legislative term. However, the parliament’s agenda lacked any reference to the completion of the government.

PM Abdul Mahdi blamed the political blocs for not reaching consensus on the candidates of other ministries, as he continued to hold the usual weekly press conference after the government meeting. He limited his answers to questions on foreign policy and Iraq’s stance on US sanctions on Iran, or US bases.

He also stressed improving security conditions and removing more of the concrete barriers inside the capital, Baghdad.

The government has not yet been completed, however, parliamentarians began accusing two ministers with corruption and sectarianism.

Minister of Electricity Louay al-Khatib is accused by MP of Anbar province Mohammad al-Karbouli of what he called "sectarian exclusion", as well as several violations in his management of the ministry.

Speaking to Asharq Al-Awsat, Karbouli justified his continuous attack for the second week saying the minister practiced the policy of sectarianism by excluding employees of the Sunni community and replacing them with other employees.

Karbouli explained that such discrimination sends a wrong message with regard to what has been said about the need for technocratic ministers, aside from any sectarian or ethnic considerations, and that managing the ministry must be based on efficiency, first and foremost.

Nasr Coalition MP, Yusuf al-Kalabi, announced that he is collecting signatures calling for the dismissal of the Minister of Communications, Naeem Thjeel al-Rubaie to include him in the accountability and justice procedures, which means he is affiliated with the banned Baath Party.

Kalabi tweeted that the Communications Minister is trying to influence the judiciary through people who have promised to bring him a decision from the appeals committee on the justice and accountability measures.

MP of the Turkmen Front, Hassan Turan told Asharq Al-Awsat that the political blocs are blamed for the obstacles they create for the Prime Minister, which ultimately leads to disturbing the government’s work given that Iraq is a parliamentary system.

Turan insisted that the PM needs the support of all parties to be able to carry out what he promised, adding that the blocs are unable of resolving their differences, which is reflected on the government’s performance.

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