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 Kurdistan opposition Gorran MP calls for new leadership amid fissures in party

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Kurdistan opposition Gorran MP calls for new leadership amid fissures in party ‎ 9.6.2012 

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Adnan Osman, an MP from the Change Movement (Gorran), believes his bloc in Parliament needs to elect a new leader. Photo: Ekurd.net/Agencies.
June 9, 2012

ERBIL-Hewlęr, Kurdistan region 'Iraq', — Adnan Osman, an MP from the Change Movement (Gorran), believes his bloc in Parliament needs to elect a new leader.

"Any member from the Gorran bloc could run for leadership and get a good number of votes. I would like to have a new leader for our bloc. I think it would be better for us," says Osman.

He adds, "By the end of this parliamentary session, at least two or three of our members should have served as leader in order to gain experience and become leaders in the future."

Gorran had decided to rotate the leadership of their bloc amongst its members, but this ceased after Kardo Muhammad became leader.

Regarding the rotation of leadership, Muhammad says, "Performance is the main factor in work. My remaining in or leaving the bloc leadership will not be decided by the moods of others because I became leader by obtaining the majority of member votes."

Muhammad says he does not oppose the idea of giving his seat to one of his fellow MPs.

"Whenever the majority decides to give the leadership to another colleague, I will give it to him with utmost respect," he says.

Kwestan Muhammad, the first leader of the Gorran bloc, supports Muhammad. "I do not support changing the leader because he has been doing his job well."

She thinks that changing the leadership will cause destabilization within the bloc.

Gorran previously had 25 seats in Kurdish Parliament, but recently lost two seats after the resignation of Karwan Salih and Abdulrahman Zakhoyi.

Osman criticized the attitude of the Gorran Movement towards the bloc in parliament, saying, "We are not satisfied with the existing relationship between the Gorran bloc and the Gorran Movement. We hoped for stronger relations and the continuation of talks."

Osman believes Gorran MPs do not treat their movement well. “There is a double standard," he says.

Osman, who led the Gorran bloc for briefly after Kwestan Muhammad, says, "Gorran and other Kurdish parties have not fully comprehended the importance of parliament yet."

The problems within the Gorran bloc surfaced when a number of members, along with MPs from other parties, requested the right to purchase the houses they currently live in at the same price they were originally bought by the government.

Nawshirwan Mustafa, the leader of Gorran, strongly criticized those Gorran MPs in an open letter and demanded their dismissal from the party unless they apologized. This statement caused problems within the bloc and two of its members are now acting as an independent group within parliament.

Osman disagrees with how Mustafa dealt with the issue, believing it could have been resolved without the publicity.

"I am against the publication of Nawshirwan Mustafa's statements. I have many notes about the content of Mustafa’s letter and do not approve of what has been says so far about this issue.” says Osman.

Osman says the punishment of Karwan Salih and his colleagues was based on something they had only intended but not done.

"It could have been a misunderstanding or a weakness towards some material gains, and they could have been dissuaded through pressure and criticism. They were punished harshly and this is a double standard. It should not have been done this way." Osman says.

In Osman’s view the Gorran leadership has not treated its MPs equally in certain situations.“I do not know what Gorran might have done to Shaho Saeed and three other MPs when they decided to retire, as they were previously against retirement yet later accepted it,” he says. “I believe Gorran has something to do with these four MPs. It has raised many questions for us."

Kwestan Muhammad has different views. "The retirement of those four MPs was the right decision because they had previously been asked to return to their jobs and they had refused. I do not believe Gorran is negligent or has problems with us. On the contrary, they help us a lot," she says.

A meeting between Kardo Muhammad, leader of the Gorran bloc,
www.ekurd.net and the president of the Kurdistan Region on May 27 was met with resentment by some Gorran MPs.

"Kardo Muhammad talked with us about the meeting on the phone and we told him our opposition to his participation in that meeting, but at the same time we do not see it as a betrayal that he took part in the meeting," says Osman.

The meetings between the Gorran bloc and President Massoud Barzani came after Gorran leader Mustafa had met with Barzani in Sulaimani and Erbil.

"It is a positive step for Mustafa to meet with Barzani, but we the MPs do not necessarily need to abide by the decisions of Gorran. Our movement can assign me as their representative to meet or visit a certain place. This is one thing and being an MP is another," says Osman.

By Hevidar Ahmed

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