Single or multiple circuit? It is the same raging disagreement that is repeated with each election season. The election law passed by Parliament under the pressure of recent popular protests has become a matter of controversy between political forces holding the decisions of the executive and legislative branches.
There is a group opposing the current electoral constituency which sees it as a loss of votes and a dispersion of parliamentary membership among the approved constituencies, while the team of supporters considers it a hypothesis that promotes the birth of a political generation that may be able to change the sectarian and ethnic quota equation in the administration of state affairs.
The muhasasa system began with the establishment of the Iraqi Governing Council on July 13, 2003, by a decision issued by the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq led by the United States represented by the then American Governor Paul Bremer.
The decision stipulated the appointment of 25 members representing all Iraqi sects, as the number of Shiite followers in the Interim Governing Council reached 13 members and 5 representatives of Sunni Arabs and the same for the Kurdish forces, while the Turkmen and Christian minorities were granted one representative for each.
The head of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) bloc, Vian Sabri, said in an interview with Al-Jazeera Net that dividing electoral districts according to the criterion of the number of quota (quota) for women in the governorate may be the most appropriate, after the political blocs agree on it, and it may be more efficient than adopting multiple districts on the basis of districts or constituencies. Singles or other criteria.
She explained that adopting multiple districts may be in the interest of large and influential parties with fixed and wide organizations on the basis of the governorates and may end small parties, because it divides the votes among electoral districts and disperses them, which means that the winning rates of figures with financial, tribal and media influence will be high, but it excluded changing the rules. Governing Council, given the societal and ethnic composition in the country.
The demonstrators welcomed the approval of the new election law, which was one of their demands, but they stressed the need to adopt an electoral denominator that satisfies the aspirations of the Iraqi street.
The House of Representatives voted on a proposal regarding the distribution of the number of constituencies in each governorate equal to the number of seats allocated to the quota for women in the governorate.
The Presidency of the Council decided, a few days ago, to keep the session open until agreement is reached on a formula to complete the electoral districts of the Parliament elections law.
With the election law passing through two phases, the first under popular pressure that resulted in the adoption of individual candidacy and multiple constituencies, there are those who blame some political forces for pulling the electoral rug in their favor.
In an interview with Al-Jazeera Net, the civil activist, Al-Farouq Al-Salihi, believes that the political class wants to obtain any gain in order to survive an electoral law that is a main demand of the demonstrators, but they worked to postpone the annexation of the multiple districts and determine the shape of the constituency several times to procrastinate the protesters’ demands.
Al-Salihi believes that dividing districts according to the women’s quota is a way out for the political forces from the dilemma of the multiple small circles, which was one of the main demands of the demonstrations that supported the choice of multiple small districts at the district level, with each district being granted 100,000 votes.
An artistic vision
Warnings from some politicians escalate that the division of electoral districts will lead to tampering in the election centers and divide them into more than one center in the regions and districts that overlap between them, as the former head of the Electoral Commission, Adel Al-Lami, in his speech to Al-Jazeera Net, believes that the calculation of districts based on the share of women in each governorate is The lesser disadvantage of calculating districts on the basis of governorates, provided that the districts be equal in number of seats whenever possible.
Al-Lami explains that “Baghdad, for example, has 69 seats .. of which 17 are for women, so 16 departments have 4 seats and one district has 5 seats, or Muthanna Governorate has 7 seats, two of which are for women, so it consists of two districts with 4 and the other 3 seats.” It leaves the proportional electoral system to the majority system if the law is passed in its current form.
And passing through changing the power rules, Al-Lami stresses that the quota system will not change much except by amending the constitution by making the list that wins the elections the one that forms the government instead of the largest bloc in parliament.
Censorship is disabled
In August 2020, the Elections Commission stipulated that early voting should proceed if four conditions are applied, most notably the completion of the election law, the completion of the quorum of the Federal Court, the preparation of the budget and the provision of international oversight, but the legal expert, Mossadegh Adel, dismissed that hypothesis, confirming in his speech to Al-Jazeera Net that the quota is one of the constitutional criteria for distributing Representative seats are not a criterion for dividing electoral districts.
Adel believes that the House of Representatives seeks, through the adoption of the women’s quota standard, to cover up the partisan division of electoral districts, while the division it adopted will contribute to perpetuating sectarianism and geographical regions at the same time, stressing that this electoral division must be subject to the supervision of the currently suspended Federal Supreme Court.
The existing differences between the parliamentary blocs and parties are limited to the content of Article 15 of the Parliamentary Elections Law, which stipulates that the nomination is 100% individual. According to documents obtained by Al-Jazeera Net, the electoral districts will be distributed for every 4 seats one electoral district, provided that the population of (the district) is not less than (400) thousand people, and the distribution or division process is subject – on an ongoing basis – to the statistics of the registration centers sent by the Electoral Commission. To the Representative Legal Committee.
The deputy of the Al-Fateh Alliance, Naim Al-Aboudi, said in an interview with Al-Jazeera Net, that the electoral districts adopted in the new law will not end the presence of political parties within the current equation, because the democratic system is based on the basis of party pluralism, but the individual election within the current electoral denominator will grant more freedom to win for the independents. .
In his speech, Al-Aboudi explains that the objection of some political forces to this division stems from fears of its impact on their political future in the next poll.