By – Abbas Al-Samarrai
In Iraq, while the parliamentarian elections scheduled for January 2010 draw closer, the KDP continues with its fraudulent attempts in order to increase its percentage of votes. Reportedly, over 35 thousand Kurdish voters residing in Irbil and Dohuk have been directed by the KDP towards the disputed regions in the province of Ninewa, namely Bashika, Sheikhan, Guveyir, Makhmur, Simal, Telkeyf, Zummar and Karac, and they have been registered at the electoral registration centers in these regions.
As a result of the checks made at the above-mentioned registration centers upon the increased denunciation and complaints, it has been found out that thousands of families, who resided in Irbil and Dohuk but came to Mosul to vote, registered at the electoral centers using fake residence and documents, and that the documents needed for official registration were not arranged.According to the laws of the Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC), an electorate who whishes to be transferred from one constituency to another must present the form prepared by the IHEC along with an official document belonging to himself/herself to the electoral registration office.
Moreover, the individual must have lived at least three months in the constituency he/she wishes to register. However, no forms and official documents were taken from 35 thousand voters who were registered at the electoral offices of Bashika, Sheikhan, Guveyir, Makhmur, Simal, Telkeyf, Zummar and Karac, and these voters who do not reside in these regions were made fill in and sign thousands of empty residence forms during the registration process.
Another surprising issue is the claims that the families in Dohuk and Irbil “were promised to get 100 million Iraqi dinars per voter if they were to register in the province of Ninewa ”. However, it has been learnt that certain families, who went to the electoral offices to register, were not paid anything and so they changed their minds and did not register.
It is interesting that majority of the individuals assigned at the mentioned registration centers consist of Kurdish teachers working in Dohuk and Irbil . In fact, these teachers appointed by the KDP and PUK are not allowed to work at electoral offices for they are “official employees”.Upon the above-mentioned developments, Mosul representatives of 14 political parties/groups prepared a written complaint to send to the “Independent High Electoral Commission, the Iraqi Parliament’s Presidential Council, Council of Ministers, Mosul Governorate, Mosul Provincial Assembly, Mosul Operation Center, Mosul Electoral Commission, and the UN Iraqi Representation”.
This complaint revealed the electoral fraud by the KDP, and emphasized that the electoral registration of the voters in the region were not respected.Furthermore, it was decided to set up an investigation commission to ensure the monitoring and establishment of any fraudulent activity.
Those who are responsible for these illegal attempts must be punished as soon as possible; these attempts are a product of the efforts of the KDP and PUK to integrate Mosul into the borders of the Kurdish regional government.In addition, these regions which are called “Disputed Regions” must be under the control of the central government. Furthermore, pashmargas who suppress and intimidate people must be taken away from these regions as soon as possible, as it was the case in the provincial elections.