Iraqi president begins consultations to choose alternative candidate to form new cabinet

BAGHDAD, March 2 (Xinhua) -- The Iraqi President Barham Salih began Monday consultations with parliamentary political blocs to choose an alternative candidate to task him to form a new cabinet after the apology of Prime Minister-designate Mohammed Tawfiq Allawi.


File photo: CGTN

A statement by the media office of the presidency said that Salih called on the lawmakers to work seriously to achieve a true national agreement on choosing alternative prime minister-designate within 15 days, in accordance with the constitution, to form a new government.

"The alternative candidate who would be designated to form the interim government should be acceptable by both people and lawmakers. The interim government should abide by its obligations toward citizens, and should be entrusted with holding early parliamentary elections," Salih confirmed.

Late on Sunday, Allawi apologized for forming a new Iraqi government, hours after the parliament failed to hold a session to vote on his cabinet lineup.

In a letter sent to Salih, Allawi said that he apologized because he was "in front of an equation, the position of prime minister in exchange for lack of honesty with my people and continuing the position at the expense of their suffering."

He said that his choice was "simple and clear, which is to be with my people, especially when I saw that some political parties were not serious about reform that they promised the people with."

On Feb. 1, Salih appointed Allawi as the prime minister-designate to form a new cabinet, and according to the Iraqi constitution, the new prime minister-designate has 30 days to form a cabinet and present it to parliament for approval.