Forum 2015 Session 5: The Future of Iraq: Democracy, Rule of Law and Institutional Reform

Date:4th November, 2015
Venue: Rotana

  • Dlawer Ala’Aldeen, President of MERI (Chair)
  • Salim Al Jabouri, Speaker of Parliament, Iraq
  • Barham Salih, Former Prime Minister, KRG

Rule of law and institutional reforms are the only way forward for a well-functioning federal state in Iraq that can ensure the rights, security, and economic prosperity of its citizens. The country still has a long way to go in this regard: Transparency International lists Iraq at the bottom of its corruption index rating at 170 out of 175 in 2014 – among the least transparent and most corrupt countries.

We should find an opportunity to regain good economic alternatives for oil revenue. This dependence is threatening the future of Iraq.”

Salim Jabouri

The report cites issues around sectarianism, lack of experience in public administration, lack of transparency in bureaucratic operations, and non-standardised selection processes in the civil service, among other factors that are threats to good governance. The feebleness of Iraq was exposed in 2014 when ISIS managed to sweep across Sunni areas. A reform plan was then introduced in Baghdad whose effectiveness remains to be seen.

The constitution has become a source for more disputes rather than a means of solving them.”

Barham Salih

Panellists here will address these issues including examining what steps have already been taken, what lessons have been learned, and what must happen next, particularly given the difficult economic and political climate in the country.

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