After several meetings throughout the week, the Iraqi parliament was unable to hold a session with complete quorum to amend the electoral law, which includes extending its term.
The session was scheduled to be held on Saturday and required 165 deputies to pass the amendment.
However, according to parliamentary sources, no more than 15 deputies were present. Speaker Salim al-Jubouri was also notably absent. Sources said he had traveled to Turkey on a short visit. First Deputy Speaker Hammam Hamoudi, who announced his rejection of the extension of the parliament’s term, was also absent.
According to political circles leaders of large blocs announced their refusal to extend the term, which shocked a large number of MPs.
Saturday was the last time parliament would hold a session before its tenure expired.
MP of State of Law Coalition Awatif Nemah said that the parliament failed in holding a session on Thursday to vote on amending the electoral law because some blocs and political figures opposed the article on extending the term.
The parliamentary legal committee worked to amend the proposed law by deleting the article on the extension and kept articles on the manual vote count, she explained.
Nemah justified the insistence on holding the session, citing very high fraud levels during the May elections.
Commissioners Board member Riyad al-Badran acknowledged there were over 800,000 canceled ballots in Baghdad representing eight parliamentary seats.
He suspected that these canceled seats would have gone to the State of Law Coalition.
Fateh spokesman, Ahmad al-Asadi, denied in a statement on Saturday reports about the alleged withdrawal, stressing the alliance with Sairoun.
On the other hand, Anbar MP Mohammed al-Karbouli told Asharq al-Awsat Sunni leaders from various blocs said Iraq’s Sunni movement aims at forming a unified bloc whose goal is not to merely “participate in the upcoming government,” but to participate in Baghdad’s political decision-making. He pointed out that “the new Sunni alliance includes more than 45 deputies from all Sunni blocs
Speaking to Asharq Al-Awsat, independent politician Ibrahim al-Sumaidaie explained that after the elections, Shiite parties were keen to form alliance to bring together the remaining Shiite blocs, which means reforming the Shiite National Alliance once again.
Sumaidaie went on to say that no breakthrough has been achieved in these efforts.