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Senior judge calls on top prosecutor general to probe into salary delays

  2021-06-02  | 
 Zhyan News Network
Judge calls on Kurdistan Region prosecutor general to form committee for follow-ups and filing against delays in public sector pays for May. Graphic by Zhyan News Network
 Zhyan News Network

SULAIMANI – Following a delay of public sector pays for May, a judge is appealing to head of Kurdistan Region Prosecutor General office Azad Hassan to follow up on the case, file lawsuits and hold to account those responsible for the procrastination.

The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) is still unable to pay its public servants on time and in full despite the devaluation of the Iraqi dinars against the US dollars and rises in the global oil prices. It has distributed May salary to a few government institutions and ministries. 

During a session on May 25, a number of lawmakers said that the ruling political parties were responsible for the delay as they have not returned oil and non-oil incomes to the public treasury. 

“It is obvious this practice is laundering of public wealth and a departure, violation to the laws and stealing Kurdistan employees’ legal rights,” Judge Ali Rekani, a member of general prosecutor general office, said in the petition. 

He called on the top senior to form a committee of three prosecutor general to make probes into the causes of the delay to the public sector payment. 

“Salary is not paid on time in 30 days despite being slashed by 21 percent each month,” the judge said.

In late March, Iraq passed its belated budget law for 2021 following agreements between the Kurdish and federal authorities.

The approval of the budget law filled the Region’s civil servants with hopes it would put an end to salary cuts and delays imposed by the KRG for over a year.

The cash-strapped KRG will receive 13.9 percent share from an estimated 129 trillion Iraqi dinars ($89 billion) budget if it obeys its obligations in the budget law. 

Unlike the previous years, the KRG will not get any share if it fails to live up to its commitment.

Throughout 2020, the KRG missed five months’ worth of salaries to its public servants and paid one in full and slashed others by either eighteen or twenty-one percent citing the COVID-19 pandemic, budget with Baghdad and low oil prices. 

Baghdad is yet to send the first budget transfer to the Kurdistan Region. 

A KRG delegation has been in Baghdad since Sunday for talks on the implementation of the Iraqi budget law. 

(Zhyan English)