Independents' alliance pushes for delaying local election amid dwindling candidate, voter count

Independents' alliance pushes for delaying local election amid dwindling candidate, voter count

Shafaq News/ An alliance of independent candidates on Monday called for postponing the local elections slated to be held in December in a bid to foster "genuine competition."

"At a time when the election fervor engulfs numerous political blocs striving for dominance, the Independent High Electoral Commission, on August 19th, 2023, presented alarming statistics," the alliance said in a press release.

IHEC's data, according to the press release, underscored a stark decline in both the number of candidates and active voters.

This downtrend, it suggested, "indicates substantial repercussions demanding meticulous assessment and efficacious decisions to safeguard the election's success and transparency."

"True democratic competition hinges on proffering diverse options to citizens. This decline may detrimentally impact the structural makeup of councils and the multifarious ideologies they embody," the press release continued.

The alliance called for a thorough examination of the root causes of this issue in order to take measures to bolster democratic presence.

In contrast, earlier, the State of Law Parliamentary Coalition categorically rebuffed attempts by certain political blocs to delay the local council elections, staunchly affirming their determination to proceed as scheduled.

On the other side, Wataniyah and Emtidad blocs declared their abstention from the upcoming elections scheduled for December 18, 2023.

Prime Minister Mohammed Shia al-Sudani has earmarked December 18, 2023, for the governorate and district elections, despite boycotts from multiple political groups, including the Euphrates Movement led by al-Sudani himself.

Regarding voter lists, the alliance said, "updated voter data poses another concern. A reduced registered voter count undermines the legitimacy of the electoral process, reflecting their disillusionment with participation."

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