The Iraqi Elections have Come and Gone. What did Assyrians do?

As I write this, it has been exactly one week since the first day of ‘Out-of-Country’ voting started for Assyrians abroad. We have only gotten few figures of how many of our people voted and for whom.  If these numbers are any indication, looks like more people outside of Iraq voted this time. This is in part thanks to the serious campaigning work that was done all over North America and others parts of the world.

As we await the results of this election, some of our votes are being challenged by the IHEC (Iraqi High Election Committee) and even being invalidated, under the excuse of not being presented with a valid voting document. Bear in mind, the IHEC and unexpectedly, changed voting rules and eligibility in the last minutes before the start of the elections for out-of-country voters. It took serious lobbying and efforts from various groups to reverse these changes.

It it one thing to be denied the chance to vote on election day, but quiet another to have your ballot invalidated a week later. People didn’t put all this effort and time, traveling from state to state, province to province, even country to country, for nothing! Every vote has to be counted, otherwise these elections will become a real joke (there is already talk of widespread fraud being committed by the ruling coalition of PM Al-Maliki)

The election didn’t end the moment you dipped your finger in that purple finger. In fact, the traces of the purple ink on your finger should be a reminder that the election and their outcome is not done with yet.  As Assyrians, we should follow up and with close attention, what is happening, and whether our vote is being taken seriously. Otherwise, why did we bother voting? we voted because we believed this election was for the goodness of our people and nation.

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