Iraq’s Parliament approves changes to pension, anti-corruption laws, debates new election legislation
Iraq’s Council of Representatives (Parliament) approved several draft laws and amendments submitted by the Iraqi government, parliamentary committees and MPs.
The new laws and amendments reduce the retirement age of public sector workers, remove financial and other privileges from senior officials, introduce new rules on illegal financial gain, and grant greater powers and a wider remit to the Integrity Commission, Iraq’s anti-corruption watchdog.
The Council of Representatives also concluded the Second Reading of a draft electoral law, and the First Reading of a draft law abolishing the current body overseeing elections in Iraq and replacing it with a new Independent High Electoral Commission.
Parliamentary approval of the new laws came as the Iraqi government continues to implement a series of measures to meet the legitimate demands of the protests and address the long-term aspirations of all Iraqis.
Summary of the new laws and amendments approved by Iraq’s Parliament
The amended Unified Pension Law No. 9 of 2014:
- Reduces the retirement age from 63 to 60 years, with exemptions for rare skills in certain sectors
- Guarantees a minimum monthly pension of 400,000 Iraqi dinars
- It is estimated that these and other changes will create more than 200,000 new vacancies in 2020
The amended Integrity Commission Law No. 30 of 2011 & the Illegal Gain Provision:
- Extends the remit of the Integrity Commission to cover trade unions, non-governmental organisations and professional associations
- Tightens conflict of interest rules for officials
- Prohibits officials from using their position or title to gain personal financial benefits; any benefit obtained this way shall be regarded as (illegal gain)
Financial Privileges of Officials Law:
- Abolishes the Financial Privileges of State Officials Law No. 13 of 2005
- Removes a wide range of financial, health, housing, transport and security benefits from the President of the Republic, the Prime Minister and the Speaker of the Council of Representatives, ministers, MPs and other senior officials
The draft Federal Electoral Law (Second Reading):
- Reduces the age of candidacy from 30 to 25
- Reduces the number of MPs from 329 to 251
- Bans successful candidates and political blocs from creating a different coalition or form a new bloc until after the formation of the new government
The draft law establishing a new Independent Election Commission (First Reading):
- Establishes a new Independent High Electoral Commission
- Decrees that the work of Commission will be overseen by 7 Commissioners
- Authorises the Commission to seek international election advice
The Iraqi government will submit other draft laws to Parliament over the coming weeks.