Pachachi Envisages Triumvirate as Iraqi Executive
AFP/al-Zaman report that Adnan Pachachi, the octogenarian interim president of the Iraqi Governing Council, envisages that the new transitional Iraqi government due to be installed July 1 will have a three-man executive. He said that the transitional parliament will elect the three presidents. He also insisted that the three-man executive would have real powers and would not just be window dressing. The three would appoint the prime minister, and would approve cabinet appointments along with the parliament, and would have the power to sign or veto legislation. He envisaged legislation originating with government ministries and then being ratified by parliament and by the 3 presidents. Another spokesman said that the 3 would not necessarily reflect Iraq’s major ethnic groups.
This system is completely unworkable and highly undemocratic. The parliament should be the body that chooses the prime minister. The parliament should be the body that thinks up laws and passes them. Pachachi’s scheme seriously blurs the separation of powers, which is a key element in democracy. The 3-man presidency would potentially always be over-ruling the prime minister. Iran after the Revolution initially had both a president and a prime minister, and they fought so viciously and produced so much gridlock that eventually the office of prime minister was abolished.
Pachachi and his backers (possibly the Americans) clearly want to use the 3-man presidency as a brake on Shiite dominance of parliament and the likely Shiite prime minister.
I think such an “executive” would be unable to decide on anything, just as the Interim Governing Council has had trouble making tough decisions. Pachachi and his aides are saying it would prevent the concentration of power in the hands of one man. Uh, Adnan, that’s what an independent legislature and judiciary are supposed to be for.