Baghdad: Iraq’s new parliament ended its critical Sunday session without any progress in filling in the vacant speakership which is vital to end the political deadlock in the country.
“The session is adjourned till Tuesday at 11 a.m.,” Xinhua quoted Mahdi al-Hafidh, acting speaker, as telling the lawmakers.
Al-Hafidh said the disappointing delay was due to the failure among various political groups to agree with each other on the candidates of the nation’s three top posts — speaker, president and prime minister.
“Till now, there was no consensus on the names of the candidates, and we will have two days for more discussions,” al-Hafidh said.
He urged all political groups to deliver a viable plan in order to restore the nation’s political life to normality.
“The situation does not bear any delay, so I urge all the blocs to take the responsibility and to show flexibility,” he said.
Earlier in the day, the new parliament convened with some 233 lawmakers out of the total 328 members attending the session.
The lawmakers were expected to choose a new speaker after the Sunni Arab politicians managed Saturday to pick Salim al-Jubouri as candidate for the head of the legislature.
They were also expected to elect two deputy speakers later in the session.
The parliament was originally scheduled to hold its first session July 1, but political differences pushed it to July 8, and then to July 13.
According to the Iraqi constitution, a new president should be chosen within the next 30 days after the election of the speaker.
Following that, the new head of state will have half a month to ask the bloc with the most lawmakers to nominate a prime minister, who will be responsible for forming a new government.