Kurdistan National Assembly (rebranded as Kurdistan Parliament) passes election law

Posted on | March 30, 2009

Pursuant to Law 2 of 2009 (4th Amendment to the Election Law of the National Council of Kurdistan, Iraq, Law 1 of 1992), passed on 25 March 2009, the Kurdistan National Assembly wishes to be known as the Kurdistan Parliament. The Parliament website (in Kurdish, Arabic and English) is well designed and contains news, legislation, resolutions, history, memberships of committees and a dossier on Article 140 of the Iraqi constitution. The English section needs some updating.
Elections to the regional legislative body, which sits in Erbil, took place in 1992 and 2005. The amendment to the elections law enables the 2009 regional elections to be supervised by Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC) of Iraq on the understanding that future elections in the region can be supervised by the Kurdistan Region Electoral Commission. An earlier draft had been sent back to the Parliament by Kurdistan Region President Massud Barzani earlier in 2009. The closed party list system will apply and the two main parties have signaled their intention to run on a joint list. A small number of seats are reserved for Turkish, Assyrian / Chaldean and Armenian minorities. The minimum age for candidate eligibility has been lowered from 30 to 25.
Kurdistan Region President Barzani is expected to announce the date of the election on 4 April 2009. It is likely to take place at the end of June based upon IHEC’s projected 90 day timetable. The Kurdistan Parliament is expected to consider the issue of holding Governorate council elections in the session due to take place on 31 March 2009. It is likely that those elections will not take place before the end of 2009 and that the current Governorate councils will remain in place until then.