Iraqi PM adviser says manual counts of votes completed

A combined picture of electoral commission’s employees counting the votes (L) and a woman who casts her ballot in Iraq’s general election

SULAIMANI (ESTA) — An advisor to the Iraqi prime minister announced on Saturday the completion of manual count of votes in the parliamentary election.

Abdulhussein al-Hindawi said results of the manual counting for the ballot boxes selected by the electoral commission matched those of the electronic voting.

Earlier, member of the Iraqi electoral commission Imad Jamil said the commission had completed 95 percent of manual counting for votes from 3,681 polling stations.

The electoral commission has also received 356 complaints from the political parties, two of which were considered “red”, he said.

He also confirmed that the results of manual and electronic counts had matched.

Iraq held early parliamentary election on October 10. Voter turnout was 41%, a record low in the post-Saddam Hussein era signaling widespread distrust of the country’s leaders and the vote for a new parliament. That’s down from 44% in the 2018 elections, which was an all-time low.

Shia Muslim cleric Moqtada al-Sadr’s party was the biggest winner in the election, increasing the number of seats he holds in parliament.

Earlier on Saturday, head of Iraqi Civil National Front Ayad Allawi said the turnout did not exceed 12%, calling on the president and the federal court to not approve the results of the election.

“The minority participated in the elections has no right to determine the fate of the majority that boycotted the polls,” he added.

On Wednesday, the Iraqi electoral commission said it would announce final results for the general election after 20 days.

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