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PM-designate asks Iraqis to apply online for cabinet

Iraq’s prime minister designate Adel Abdel Mahdi has been struggling to form a government since his appointment on October 2 © AFP / ALAIN JOCARD

Baghdad, Iraq, Oct 9 – Iraq’s prime minister designate Adel Abdel Mahdi launched a website on Tuesday to allow candidates to apply for a ministerial position online as he struggles to form a government.

The unprecedented measure comes as Abdel Mahdi, a former Iraqi vice president, battles to overcome sharp party political differences and forge a viable governing coalition.

Abdel Mahdi was named prime minister on October 2 and, under the terms of the constitution, has until November 1 to form his government.

The new website gives would-be candidates a three-day opportunity — from Tuesday morning until Thursday afternoon — to register online for a ministerial post.

Applicants must register their personal data, indicate their political orientation and state whether they belong to any political party, according to the terms of registration found online.

Both men and women may apply. Applicants must have a university degree or equivalent qualification — a mandatory requirement for joining the government.

Candidates can then choose the ministry they wish to head and must write a short statement of their vision of what makes a “successful leader” and “how to manage teams effectively”.

Applicants are also asked to set out in their vision statement how they would tackle the problems facing their ministry of choice and “practical solutions” for doing so.

Abdel Mahdi, 76, is a veteran of Iraq’s fractious political scene.

He is seen as an independent who brings years of experience to the job, culminating in a spell as oil minister under his predecessor Haider al-Abadi.

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A Shiite and native of Baghdad, the premier-designate is an economist by training and has the blessing of both of Iraq’s feuding foreign power brokers — Iran and the United States.

He was assigned to form a government by new President Barham Saleh, a moderate Kurd who was elected by parliament on October 2 defeating the candidate of veteran nationalist leader Massud Barzani.


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