6th Peer Networking Meeting: July 18, 2011


On July 18 2011, IF held the 6th Peer Networking Meeting in the Iraqi COR. The meeting discussed the loopholes in the Parliament bylaws as well as female MPs’ and civil society’s contributions in revising the Parliament bylaws. Only 10 Parliamentarians had the chance to attend this meeting due to the fact that most parliamentarians were in the Kurdish region and bad weather conditions prevented planes coming from Erbil from taking off. MP Fatima Toumane, who had heard about the project and requested to join the program, was present at the meeting. State Ministry for Parliament Affairs’ adviser, Mr. Mu’taz Al-Abbasi and Chairman of the board of the National Dialogue Forum Mr. Ali Akaab Al-Samah also attended the meeting.

During the meeting Dr. Al-Abbasi explained that the COR Bylaws organize the work of the legislative authority and organize the relationship between the legislative and the executive authority. In addition, the COR Bylaws should be in line with the Constitution and the legislative and executive authorities should participate in drafting  them, they should be subject to appeal if they violate the Constitution, and they should include the principle of separation between authorities.

Civil society activist Mr. Ali Ekab Al-Samah talked about the role of civil society in reforming the parliament bylaws. He briefed the audience on his organization’s work (a forum that includes 600 NGOs) and indicated that his forum was able to influence the draft committee during the process of writing of the Iraqi constitution. Their successes include the inclusion of hearing sessions for civil society at Parliament Committees.

Former and re-elected Parliamentarian also joined the debate: MP Samira Al-Musawi emphasized the importance of keeping the channels of communication open between parliament and civil society. She indicated that during a rent trip to the US, she was very impressed by the number of hearing sessions and realized that hearing sessions were instrumental in the process of decision-making. MP Nada Al-Juburi agreed and added that civil society should be taken more seriously by parliament because it represents the voice of the people.

Comments are closed.