Influential Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, who led the Sairoon Coalition to victory in the May 12 election, demands the first session of parliament to resume on Oct. 7, 2018. (Photo: Archive)
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Muqtada al-Sadr, the leader of the Sairoon Coalition that won the parliamentary elections in Iraq, has asked the Prime Minister-designate to make independent decisions on electing members of his cabinet.
Sadr urged Iraqi PM-designate Adel Abdul Mahdi to begin electing ministers of the cabinet, particularly the ministers of interior and defense.
“The Prime Minister has to maintain the ministries of defense and interior and all sensitive security posts in his own hand,” Sadr said in a statement on Saturday.
“No blocs in the parliament or any party should nominate anyone [for the security posts],” he added, underlining that the loyalty of Iraq’s army and police should only be for the nation.
Sadr previously said he had instructed Abdul Mahdi not to nominate any officials from the Sairoon Coalition for any ministerial posts.
“We did not want any ministers from our side as it is going to be in the hands of the prime minister to nominate technocrat and independent persons; otherwise, we will have other reactions.”
He added that the running of other administrative posts that have been seized by what he called “deep state” has to be through a logical and legal basis.
Earlier in the week, the Shia cleric said Abdul Mahdi should be allowed to form his cabinet free from political or sectarian pressures.
According to Sadr, the nominee for the prime minister post should avoid sectarian, ethnic, and partisan divisions when selecting their ministers.
He also warned that the new prime minister has a “one-year deadline” to enact reform or face a popular uprising.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany