Politics & Economics

Reconstruction is the main issue in Mosul ahead of elections

Iraq

After being liberated from ISIS last year, Mosul is still facing many issues including the lack of reconstruction and return of public services. With the elections coming soon, citizens of Mosul express their issues to the candidates.

The city of Mosul was the centre of ISIS’ so-called Islamic State for over three years and it was witness to untold destruction over the course the terrorist group’s rule and the ensuing battles of liberation.

Since the liberation of the city, local residents who had been displaced began to return home, which, to a large extent, had been completed turned into rubble. This has been the case not only for people’s houses but the whole infrastructure of the city: roads, hospitals, shops, water systems, municipal buildings, educational centres etc.

Naturally, the reconstruction of the city is the primary concern of local residents as infrastructure forms the basis of the running of the economy and return to normal life. Thus, this issue has drawn most of the attention in Mosul in the run up to the Iraqi national elections on 12 May.

The election campaign in Mosul has been under way for a while now as the various political parties, coalitions and movements have put forward their candidates and manifestos as they bid to vie for power in Iraq’s second largest city. Their campaigns in Mosul have all focused on the issue of reconstruction and the rehabilitation of public services.

The city of Mosul was liberated in mid-July of 2017. Since then, several initiatives have been launched to rehabilitate the city, which have involved local, national and international actors.

Initially, certain civilians who returned to Mosul began to form volunteer groups to clear the rubble of the city as assistance from local and central authorities was limited as the fight against ISIS had not yet abated and resources were still being channelled towards the liberation efforts. Later on, international organisations, such as the UN, began to get involved in the reconstruction process. One important initiative was the Kuwait conference for the Reconstruction of Iraq, in which foreign investors made bids to contribute to the reconstruction process, with a heavy focus on Mosul.

Image: Al Jazeera