Baghdad- Former Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki revealed that he is planning to return to office after being declined for a third term by each of Iraqi political forces and U.S. management after the 2014 elections.
Al-Maliki pointed out that ever since Haider Al-Abadi was assigned prime minister in 2014 he has been putting a spoke in the wheel of any replacement that would come after the end of his term. He also referred that all moves were in order to keep al-Maliki from going back to office.
An Iraqi MP told Asharq Al-Awsat that extensive efforts al-Maliki spent over the past few weeks aimed at convincing leaderships at the State of Law Coalition and the national coalition of his return as prime minister. Al-Maliki took advantage of what he referred to as al-Abadi’s failure on carrying out duties. The high-up MP, who requested anonymity, added that al-Maliki allegedly claimed that only he is capable of fixing things.
Al-Maliki also mentioned that he won over votes during the previous legislative elections.
The MP, who also belongs to the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq, a political party led by Ammar al-Hakeem, added that al-Maliki has intensified his efforts by sending out dinner invitations, convening in bilateral sessions with leaderships from the State of Law Coalition, the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq and the Sadrist Movement.
Al-Maliki tried to convince and persuade those he met with ministerial posts and financial privileges should they support his candidacy for prime minister instead of al-Abadi.
The MP source added that al-Maliki described himself a strong prime minister while al-Abadii being a weak one.
Al-Maliki met southern clan leaders and discussed corruption and the necessity of changing the current administration, he added.
Moreover, broadcasting channel (Aafaq) backing al-Maliki aired programs glorifying him as a leader and downplaying the current government. The programs have dubbed al-Maliki as the “first Vice President of Iraq”, despite al-Abadi dismissing him from duty along with Eyyad A’lawi and Ossama al-Nojayfi.
Meanwhile al-Abadi demands that parliament parties and social influential figures support the passing of technocratic ministerial positions in the new government he intends on forming.
Al-Abadi faces many pressures from powerful political parties in Iraq, one of them imposed by the Sadrist movement leader Muqtada al-Sadr. In a Friday gathered popular protest, al-Sadr demanded radical comprehensive reform from al-Abadi and asked him to rise up to his responsibilities to save Iraq.
Thousands of Sadrist supporters participated in the demonstration held in the Liberation Square, Baghdad to reassure that the party’s demands for fighting corruption and broad administrational reform have not changed. At the protest, and on a wide-screen projection, al-Sadr spoke the words: “corruption has bonked on a dangerous zone, and has spread to all.”