Leading Sunni politicians continue to debate who to nominate as parliamentary speaker. Due to the confessional quota system, the position is traditionally assigned to a member of Iraq's Sunni bloc
SULAIMANI — The Sunni blocs that received the most seats in May’s election have still not yet agreed on who they will nominate as the next speaker of the federal parliament, despite several announcements that someone had been chosen.
A member of the National Coalition, Raad al-Dahlaki, said in a press statement on Sunday (August 5) that the “Sunni blocs are still considering the possibility of becoming a common bloc to negotiate the formation of a new government, but have not agreed on the names that they will nominate for senior positions, including the speaker of parliament,” according to al-Hayat newspaper.
He stressed that his coalition wants to discuss their policy program with the blocs that won seats in the liberated provinces before talking about positions.
He added that “the names that have been raised so far are not officially running and that the statements are just speculation because the winning blocs have not meet for weeks and were waiting for the final ratification of the election results.”
A prominent member of the Muttahidoon Coalition, Abd Dhiyab al-Ajili, said that “all the Sunni blocs want to nominate Vice President Osama al-Nujaifi for speaker, given his previous experience managing the Council of Representatives.”
He said in a statement that “Salim al-Jubouri [the current speaker] is the most likely to win the position depending on the outcome of the manual recount, otherwise Nujaifi will be called to the post,” pointing out that “other people want the position, but are less likely be chosen than Jubouri or Nujaifi.”
Former defense minister and member of the Nasr Coalition in Nineveh, Khaled al-Obaidi, revealed in a statement last week that “many Sunni political parties had nominated him for speaker,” but that they also supported Nujaifi too.