Monday, June 21, 2004


Naheya Councils - Notes and Limitations

1. Naheya councils should not be given authority to make local laws (apart from some aspects of environment and wild-life protection) to ensure uniformity throughout Iraq.

2. No authority, except the National Assembly, is given the power to disband any Naheya Council and order re-elections.

3. The constitution should guarantee the rights and authority of these councils so that they are not eroded by central governments in future.

4. A Naheya council should be capable of replacing its chairperson through a motion by ΒΌ of its members and ascent of 2/3.

5. Delegates from the Naheya council to the Muhafatha council are chosen for a period of one year only.

6. It is vital that council meetings are documented and open to the public but in a way that does not interfere with the conduct of its business.

7. Councils should not be given the power to charge fees for compulsory education (up to the age of 12 initially) which should remain free.

8. Naheya elections should never be monitored by the executive authority, but only by the judicial one.

9. Council meetings can be held using the language preferred by a majority of its members.

10. Topics and projects discussed by the council can be suggested by 3000 electors, three members, Muhafatha councils, Local Government Council, National Assembly or central government.

11. Procedures in Naheya Councils should be regulated by law to ensure uniformity of councils throughout Iraq.

12. Conditions and requirements for nomination for election of Naheya council membership should be kept to a minimum. The people themselves are the main source of legitimacy and not the executive authority. People have a right to elect their representatives with the minimum of interference from central authorities.

13. The councils are forums scattered all over Iraq to discover and train leaderships, and should be viewed as such.

14. Much of the administrative structures (education, health, irrigation, etc.) needed by the Naheya councils to operate already exist in most Naheyas and are useful to utilize as they are at present.

15. The affiliation of civil servants working for Naheya Councils to Naheyas or to central government needs careful consideration. However, Naheya Council should have an important say in evaluating their performance.

16. Naheya Councils should have considerable freedom in deciding on financial rewards and salaries for its employees to enable distant, less-developed districts to attract good-caliber staff.

17. It is useful to enable Naheya Councils to call upon the expertise of Muhafatha or national government officials.

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