There have been several Iraq provinces that have completed their vote count and are waiting for the remainder of the votes to be released from the Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC). The results of the votes are expected to be released on or before 25 May.
The President of Kurdistan Region, Massoud Barzani, has stated in local Baghdad media that he is willing to accept Prime Minister Nuri Maliki for a third term. Barzani would like to make sure that the president of Iraq remains in the Kurdish hands. However, there is talk that the powers to be would like to see a Sunni in the president’s position.
Since last December Fallujah has been in the hands of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki has ordered the Iraqi military to launch a full scale assault on the city of Fallujah. I have previously published videos and written postings on this terrorist group topic in the past. It appears so far that the military operation is going well, the Iraqi military have killed dozens of ISIL and have seized their equipment and arms. The military operation is still ongoing and I will be giving updates.
Recently, Prime Minister al-Malki, in his weekly address to the nation had some criticism for the Iraq Speaker of the Council of Representatives, Usama al-Nujayfi. PM Maliki stated that Nujayfi was responsible and possibly the cause of important legislation such as; the Oil & Gas law, not being passed as well as critical banking laws and regulatory policies. PM Maliki also criticized the Iraq parliament members for not taking responsibility to help Iraqi citizens in the performance of their duties. We are observing a rift between Maliki and Nujayfi and this will no doubt cause the Parliament speaker to quickly form alliances with other political parties. I’m predicting that PM Maliki will be looking for Parliament speaker replacement at some point in time. PM Maliki is moving forth with organizing and shaping up the next Iraq government with key players to move Iraq into the next phase of security and reconstruction. All of which are badly needed to gain the confidence of foreign investors and companies to enter Iraq.
If you observe the political maneuvering in Iraq it appears that it is all in opposition to PM Maliki. They are all vying to get the best position within the next Iraq government. Most of the political players are all associates and comrades. Most of what they do and say is all for public show to the Iraqi people. I call it performances.
State of Law coalition MP, Sadiq al-Labban reiterated Maliki’s claims that the coalition would seek to form a majority government. “The results will determine our position, but all signs indicate that the State of Law coalition and Maliki have likely secured victory.”
In a few weeks, the Development Fund for Iraq (DFI) will expire on 22 May just like it has every year since 2003. There are lien holders, pending litigation and lawsuits against the Iraq governments previous regime. The DFI funds are held in a New York bank and the Ministry of Finance has access to these funds. The DFI account will continue being held in New York until after 22 May and will not be exposed to the numerous liens, lawsuits and creditors. The Iraq government will not risk losing those DFI funds.
The Iraq federal budget for 2014 will continue to be delayed as they wait for the next government to be seated. It is possible that the next seated government will have to work on both the 2014 and 2015 budgets. The next government will have to work harder than they ever have to accomplish this task. Projects in Iraq are suspended or stopped altogether because of the Iraqi Parliament Speaker and the Parliament members failing to pass a federal budget. More delays, not a shocker.