Maliki Seeks ‘Majority Government’ In Iraq

By Mushreq Abbas for Al-Monitor. Any opinions expressed are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki seemed confident that he will achieve “a landslide victory” in the local elections on April 20. His confidence was apparent in the statements he made while campaigning for his State of Law coalition. He called for “early elections” from which will emanate a “majority government” that will grant him a “third term.”

Maliki’s electoral proposals reveal the nature of Iraq’s political divide. He said, “The political process has entered into the recovery room. Relations between our partners was based on disruption, which necessitates early elections that will draw a new political map to revive the country…Security and development will not be achieved unless there is political stability, which is achieved by forming a majority government…What exists now is not a partnership, but quotas, and this is very harmful to the political process as long as there is no political majority that supports the local and federal governments.”

Maliki, who is both the prime minister and head of the State of Law coalition, had previously called for a “majority government” by asserting that his coalition will win “a majority of the seats in all Iraqi cities.” He also asserted that his opponents’ attempts to prevent his nomination for a third term as head of government (2014-2018) were “desperate” and “unconstitutional.”

What is said during electoral campaigns is not normally given a lot of weight, but in the very complex and deteriorating political situation in Iraq, campaign statements tend to reveal the nature of the crisis and the proposed solutions.

Maliki’s opponents believe that a “majority government” implies a sectarian majority composed of Shiites that will exclude the Sunnis and Kurds. They also wonder that since Maliki has monopolized power despite the agreements he struck with his partners and despite their presence in government, what would happen if his political party was allowed to monopolize the cabinet? They also find it problematic that Maliki is insisting on a third term as a prime minister who controls all the executive authority, while dozens of laws that limit the prime minister’s powers are being stalled. Maliki’s opponents are trying to set term limits for the premiership. They have presented a law in that regard to the Constitutional Court. Sources say that the court will reject that law.

3 Responses to Maliki Seeks ‘Majority Government’ In Iraq

  1. Kickabuck April 13, 2013 at 1:06 am #

    Maliki signed the Erbil agreement and proceeded to stab those who aligned his majority election in the back. Even if his phony government can rig elections, there will be a war with the Kurds/Saad/Sunni’s, or a complete iraqi arab spring arrival before the dominant parties oust maliki…it’s already obvious the kurds are ready for war if that’s the path Baghdad wants to take with oil. Iraq wants a unified democracy, it’s a shame corruption among the leaders is so rampant.

  2. Cristiano Ronaldo April 13, 2013 at 8:52 am #

    Unhold promises, intimidation, nepotism and corruption are the main trademarks of Dawa represented by Mr Nouri al-Maliki.

    You iraqui citizn, will you buy a car from this guy?

  3. Mohammad April 18, 2013 at 6:33 am #

    Democracy in 3rd world countries is quite different than in West.
    When there is no majority in these countries the only slogan these leaders commit to is separation for their own benefit. In this situation Army keep budging in to avoid the breakup. Iraq sitting at the dawn of democracy needs a strong leader who is capable of dealing with the fractions whose only interest is the breakup for their own good. With Malaki I see a leader who is holding tough in face of conspiracies and foreign interference to keep the country together. I give him thumbs up on job well done; his third term will make the country strong especially in face of West still trying to push new democracy to the wall.