Leader of the Turkmen Front Arshad Salehi has stressed that voter rolls of the multi-ethnic province of Kirkuk should be cleaned up ahead of upcoming provincial elections planned for April next year, warning that if that did not happen “the people of Kirkuk will have another say.”
Salehi’s comments came in an exclusive interview with KirkukNow on Saturday August 17 following a press conference he gave at the governorate’s office.
The leader of the Turkmen Front said they support the holding of the provincial elections in Kirkuk; however, he laid down the clean-up of the electoral rolls as a condition for the process.
“Our condition is that the elections high commission should work to update voter lists,” he added.
The last provincial elections in Iraq were held in 2013, except in Kirkuk where disputes among the province’s diverse components, including voter rolls and the normalization of the situation in the province have delayed the process since 2005.
According to recent amendments in the provincial elections law, the election process could be held after voter rolls are cleansed.
Salehi emphasized that the Turkmens had some reservations on the amended law, however the will of the political blocs persuaded us to approve the new law.”
Kurds have rejected the amendment which calls for voter roll clean-up, arguing that it was added to the law by the Iraqi parliament speaker during the voting process.