Ministry of Communications went the way of General Electric
Your probably thinking they are the governments Ministry, they have plenty of money. The truth is that they are broke and as the same way with not knowing how much electricity the Iraqi people are using to collect the money what is owed to the government they also can’t collect what is owed to them from landline phones.
The Ministry of communications has a problem of not knowing how much and unable to collect the fee’s for landline phones and other services the Iraqi’s used to add to the communications budget.
The MOC does not have a budget to pay the government employees and is seeking a loan from a private Iraqi bank.
Today, the Deputy Minister of communications for Technical Affairs, Ameer Al Bayati, said “The Ministry realizes the importance and seriousness of this issue. To us at the Ministry, this is about the people and not about the job. The Ministry has been waiting for the government to allocate our portion of the budget, however, the Ministry of Finance has not yet allocated a budget for the Ministry of Communications due to our Ministries’ lack of revenue sources when compared to other Ministries.”
There is no government and no budget allocated to this ministry. The Ministry of Finance did find the funds for the month of July to pay the government salaries of the MOC. You have to ask yourselves where did those funds come from?
The deputy Minister continued with his statement, “there are many outstanding debts owed to the Ministry from private citizens for landline phone service, even if all these outstanding debts were paid, it would not even cover the Ministry’s salaries for one month.”
At&T or Verizon would not set one foot in Iraq just like your favorite Company, General Electric, when they are paid by the usage of those services for the life of the contract. When I say contracts I mean 20-30 year contracts and at the end of the contracts the Iraqi government will nationalize those entities and then they would own them ie. Telecommunications, Power electrical grid, Oil refineries etc.
By the way, their are General Electric parts sitting inside a Iraq warehouse getting a little rusty.
Let’s hope the MOC has a plan to maybe use the Ministry owned companies and the financial resources of the Ministry to become self funded. We can only hope.
The Al-Sharqiyah Television Station broadcast news reports and I will list a few here.
– Violence: Violence kills 200-300 Iraqi civilians each month as a result of blasts and assassinations. It is worth mentioning that this figure is much lower than during the days of sectarian violence in 2006 and 2007, during which 3,000 civilians were killed each month.
– Refugees: Some 1.5 million Iraqis have migrated from their homes to other areas of Iraq as a result of sectarian violence, while some believe that the number of Iraqis residing abroad is perhaps as many as 3 million.
– Crime and justice: Extremist groups and militias commit crimes at an increasing rate and no reliable statistics are available on crime, however, it is believed that dozens of people, including children, are abducted for ransom. In addition, gunmen have launched bold attacks on jewellery shops, banks, and employees who carry government employees’ salaries.
– Economy: The official unemployment rate is 18 per cent; however, experts believe that it is closer to 30 per cent. It is worth mentioning that many contracts have been signed with international oil companies to develop the oil reserves of Iraq, which currently holds the third largest oil reserve in the world, but so far, no tangible results have surfaced.
– Services: The majority of Iraqi families only receive electricity for a few hours per day. The people’s main complaints revolve around electricity cuts. According to government statistics, which are used by the International Committee of the Red Cross, one out of every four cannot obtain safe drinking water.
– Poverty: Some seven million Iraqis or 23 per cent of the population live under the poverty line.
– Corruption: In 2009, Transparency International ranked Iraq number 176 out of 180 of the most corrupt countries in the world.
– Society: Some 300,000 Iraqi youths do not attend school. A recent survey conducted by the UN discovered that 65 per cent of Iraqi youths do not know how to use a computer.
– Hospitals and Health Services: Iraqi suffers from an acute shortage of hospitals and has 35,000 beds but needs 95,000, according to a report by the Ministry of Health.
– Mines: In a report issued last year, the United Nations Development Program and the United Nations Children’s Fund said Iraq has one of the highest numbers of mines in the world.
– Widows and Orphans: After decades of war, there are still no official reports on widows or orphans in Iraq. However, Iraqi officials estimate the number of widows to be no less than one million while the number of orphans is three million.
– “The leadership of the Iraqi National Alliance [INA] has underlined the need to preserve its unity in its capacity as the largest bloc in the parliament. A statement issued by the Iraqi National Congress yesterday said that the leadership of the INA held an open meeting during an iftar banquet hosted by Ahmad Chalabi, a leading figure in the INA, on the occasion marking the first anniversary of the establishment of the INA.”
– “A number of tribal chieftains and prominent figures in Basra have called on the leaders of political blocs to expedite the formation of the government and to put the nation’s interests above narrow personal or partisan interests. The chieftains pointed out that the delay in the formation of the government has caused a negative impact on the security and economic situation in the country. They also called on the political blocs to direct their attention to the daily suffering of the citizens and to bear in mind their misery due to the delay in the formation of the government.”
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The talks of forming a government have reached a “Dead End.” This is what an Arabic newspaper is currently reporting.
As always more to follow:
Please take the time to read this article about the Iraqi government crushing labor unions.
Is the US Pulling the Plug on Iraqi Workers?
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American Contractor has been living in the Middle East and Central Asia since 2003.