Iraq Vote Recount Matches Initial Results as Jabouri Expected to Return as Parliament Speaker
Iraq’s Independent High Electoral Commission IHEC team arrived to Erbil on Wednesday with a plan to conduct a manual recount of parliamentary elections ballots.
During the past two weeks, a nine-judge panel of commissioners moved from one province to another, carrying out a recount in the hopes of settling a heated national debate revolving around election results that have been plagued by fraud accusations.
The team visited a number of governorates, including Sulaymaniyah.
Informed sources said that the IHEC brought 425 disputed ballot boxes from the Salaheddine province and another 501 from al-Anbar. Sources confirmed that the Baghdad will be the last province to have its votes recounted.
In Erbil, there are 220 ballot boxes that will have their votes recounted.
IHEC and the judges overseeing the process across the country previously announced that they had interpreted the Supreme Court’s approval of a manual recount as applying only to ballot centers where fraud complaints were lodged.
Many of leaks involving the recount have so far revealed that the results correspond to those given by the electronic count by nearly 100 percent for most of the contested ballot boxes, especially in southern provinces.
The matching results was interpreted by some political figures as an attempt to “appease” those opposed to the recount.
A State of Law alliance source told Asharq Al-Awsat that given the initial recount results, the political process in the country should move forward.
“This process demands that some losing parties be appeased in one way or another,” he added on condition of anonymity.
Moreover, the source did not rule out the chance of parliament Speaker Salim al-Jabouri returning to his post to preside over the new legislature, despite his loss in the elections.
He predicted this development to be part of a “possible political settlement.”