By Reidar Visser.
The following article was published by Reidar Visser, an historian of Iraq educated at the University of Oxford and currently based at the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs. It is reproduced here with the author’s permission. Any opinions expressed are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.
De-Baathification in the Iraqi Provincial Elections by Governorate and Political Entity
Exactly as in the 2010 parliamentary elections, the release of official candidate lists for the 20 April local elections is a two-tiered process. An initial batch of approved candidates – the majority of 8,099 vetted candidates – has been released first.
Candidates that have been struck from the lists due to problems with their candidature have their names suppressed in the first list, but they can appeal. If they succeed, they will appear in an addendum to the official candidate lists, to be published by IHEC separately.
Also like in 2010, it is possible to use the statistics of omitted candidates from the released lists of candidates as an indication of de-Baathification issues and how they affect different political entities and geographical regions of Iraq. True, omitted candidates also include a minority of people whose exclusion may relate to other factors, such as criminal charges or forged documents.
There are also a host of other methodological issues to keep in mind. Nonetheless, since the majority of the omissions appear to relate to de-Baathification, these statistics do offer a sufficiently distinctive picture to say something about how people’s relationship with the old Baathist regime are still having an impact across Iraq .