Thursday, April 22, 2010

Allwai fears Baghdad vote recount could be manipulated.

Allawi has reason to fear. Maliki has been doing everything possible to overturn the results of the election even though he if anyone had most control over the process. Many Sunni candidates were disqualified. As the article mentions international observers certified the process as fair. Yet Maliki is contesting the results even in Baghdad where he won. If there are no observers then everyone will suspect that the recount was meant to help Maliki even if it is fair. If there are no observers this will only heighten an already tense situation as the Sunnis and Allawi will believe that Allawi's right to form a coalition government is being stolen away from them.

Allawi fears Baghdad vote recount could be manipulated
By Agence France Presse (AFP)

BAGHDAD: Former Iraqi Premier Iyad Allawi, whose Iraqiya bloc narrowly won last month’s general election, said on Tuesday he was concerned about possible irregularities during a recount ordered for Baghdad.

Iraqiya “supports the manual recount of ballots, but we are worried about practices that could accompany this exercise and which could lead to a change in the results that would benefit certain groups,” he told a news conference.

Allawi beat Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki nationwide by securing 91 seats against the incumbent’s 89, according to unofficial results.

In Baghdad, with 70 seats the largest prize in the 325-seat parliament, Allawi gained 24 seats to 26 for Maliki’s State of Law bloc.

“Are there going to be any international observers to supervise this process,” Allawi asked, adding the outcome of the March 7 election was “favorably welcomed” by the international community.

Although Maliki came out ahead in the capital, he alleged there had been manipulation in voting stations as he lost a total of 750,000 votes in five provinces, including Baghdad.

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