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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
05BAGHDAD3130
2005-07-29 07:41:00
UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
Embassy Baghdad
Cable title:  

KIRKUK: MUNICIPAL COUNCILS IN SUB-DISTRICTS

Tags:   PGOV  ECON  IZ 
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This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
						UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 BAGHDAD 003130 

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE BUT UNCLASSIFIED

E.O. 12958: DECL:N/A

TAGS: PGOV ECON IZ
SUBJECT: KIRKUK: MUNICIPAL COUNCILS IN SUB-DISTRICTS
VIRTUALLY POWERLESS

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 BAGHDAD 003130

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE BUT UNCLASSIFIED

E.O. 12958: DECL:N/A

TAGS: PGOV ECON IZ
SUBJECT: KIRKUK: MUNICIPAL COUNCILS IN SUB-DISTRICTS
VIRTUALLY POWERLESS


1. (SBU) SUMMARY. Municipal council chairmen for five
Kirkuk sub-districts expressed frustration July 20
over the lack of infrastructure in their towns. They
asserted that without leverage over budgets, municipal
councils cannot provide public services to their
communities. Although municipal councils meet, their
credibility with the public has declined. If they are
to remain relevant, district councils in places like
Kirkuk must learn to channel local views through
effective lobbying with other officials, such as
provincial council members, TNA members and ministers.
END SUMMARY.

Councils Unable to Meet Basic Needs
--------------


2. (SBU) Municipal council chairmen from five of the
six Kirkuk sub-districts met with REO Kirkuk PolOffs
on July 20 in a REO initiative to improve
communication with local governments. Attendees
included: Hassan Abid Al-Juburi, Multaqa district;
Dashti Abdul-Majeed Haseeb, Laylan; Maad Sami Al-Assi
(deputy chairman), Taza; Rizgar Papilani, Shwan; and
Luqman Aziz, Qarahanjeer. (NOTE: Shwan, Qarahanjeer,
and Qadir Karam districts receive their funding from
the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), yet fall into
Kirkuk sub-district jurisdiction. END NOTE.) The
councilmen described their frustration at not being
able to meet even the most basic constituent needs.
Inadequate supplies of water and electricity topped
their list of concerns. Laylan Council Chairman
Abdul-Majeed Haseeb noted growing resentment regarding
the perceived insignificance of reconstruction
projects in his town. He said the public expects
projects that will add noticeable value to the
ordinary citizen's life. He noted that, without
sufficient clean water and dependable electricity, it
is impossible for municipal councils to focus on
governance issues.

No Budget and Unresponsive Provincial Government
-------------- ---


3. (SBU) The chairmen claimed that their councils do
not receive a budget through the national budgeting
process, have no allocation for spending, and council
members do not receive salaries. The chairmen
described their council buildings as dismal and poorly
furnished. They worry about security and the lack of
resources to protect themselves, their families and
the council meeting places.


4. (SBU) They unanimously voiced dissatisfaction with
the Kirkuk Governor and Provincial Council in dealing
with their concerns. Shwan Council Chairman Rizgar
Papilani said the sub-districts are forgotten in
Kirkuk government's higher echelons. The chairmen
complained that their requests for meetings with the
Governor were refused and all agreed that they have no
interaction with the Kirkuk Provincial Council. In
fact, Papilani said he requested meetings on three
separate occasions with the previous Kirkuk Provincial
Council Chairman, but was refused each time. However,
he noted that he has not recently requested a meeting
with current chairman, Rizgar Ali Hamajan (PUK).

Losing Credibility at Home
--------------


5. (SBU) There has been project work in Kirkuk
(Tamim) province - some USD 18 million in IRRF-
financed projects have been completed, with another
USD 261 million in projects underway, and up to USD
141 million more planned. This funding does not go
through the district councils, however. Powerless to
undertake work independently without a budget, the
local council chairmen said they continue to hold
meetings on a regular basis. However, all agreed that
it is increasingly difficult to maintain the respect
of their communities while faced with repeated
failures to produce visible public service results in
a constituency that views deliver projects as
equivalent to power. The two Arab and three Kurdish
chairmen at the meeting were united in their concerns
and all frustrated, regardless of ethnicity - a rare
sign of unity in Kirkuk. If they are to remain
relevant in the current structure, district councils
in places like Kirkuk must learn to channel local
views through effective lobbying with other officials,
such as provincial council members, TNA members and
ministers.


6. (U) Embassy Baghdad, REO Mosul, and REO Basrah
minimize considered.