Open Letter from Nawshirwan Mustafa to Gorran’s Parliamentarians in Kurdistan Parliament

  • 29/01/2012 00:00:00

Open Letter from Nawshirwan Mustafa to Gorran’s Parliamentarians in Kurdistan Parliament

Honourable Members of Gorran Fraction in Kurdistan Parliament


I, as a humble participant in the establishment of Gorran’s election list, and as a citizen of Kurdistan, I deem it to be my prerogative to address this letter to you.

More than two years ago you took a certain oath as representatives of hundreds of thousands of citizens. And before that you promised, in public, that you will be faithful to Gorran’s election manifesto. Based on these promises, the citizen of Kurdistan voted for you and for us.

My comrades and I put our names next to yours on the list with pride, in order to obtain the people’s trust together. During the election campaign the citizens pour in their thousands into the streets with great hopes and anticipations. Some 4 thousand citizens lost their jobs and were chastised because of their support to Gorran List. Thousands of Gorran activists and supporters faced threats to their lives, endured incarceration and beating. But they bravely persevered and enthusiastically continued in supporting you. Thousands of veterans Peshmerga, hundreds of volunteer monitors of ballot boxes, hundreds of journalists, writers, artists and intellectuals supported you. Your colleagues in Rozhnama newspaper, KNN TV, Gorran Radio, Sbeiy website and all other outlets of Wusha company mounted the greatest election campaign in your favour. They brought innovations in their fields, instilled courage and high morale into thousands of citizens to encourage them to take part in the election and cast their votes freely.

No doubt we still have our faith in you and believe that you are committed to the main objectives of Gorran Movement. Just as we supported your bid to enter the Parliament, we also wish you to retain the respect of the people for you. Let it be clear to you that neither we, nor your colleagues nor any other citizen are envious of you, or crave for the privileges that you enjoy. On the contrary, we have often commended you and felt proud of our association with you. We have praised you on several occasions and hailed you as the first vanguard of Parliamentary struggle. But two years on, it is time for me to tell you few things candidly.

Since my days as a Peshmerga, I have always weighed the character of the brave women and men who crossed my path by their resilience in resisting the temptations of money and office, by their ability not to let their egos change their perspectives and elude them to be better than the people when they receive praises from them. Frankly, some of you have emerged feebly from the first test, having succumbed to the temptations of flats, villas, cars, bodyguards and other privileges. However, so far, neither I nor any organs of Gorran have formally rebuked you. When it comes to political education, I don’t believe in lectures and sermons.

I don’t approve of people having to refrain from committing wrong deeds only because of fear of me or of party disciplining. I would prefer that they refrain from unbecoming conducts because of their concern about their accountability to the people and because of their own conscience. I believe in the Native Americans motto that states; bringing up children, you should let the child commit several mistakes and let him suffer for it, only then hold his hand and talk to him.

By now you have already realised that you have made mistakes and have suffered for it. I would like to make it clear to all of you that Gorran Movement is not prepared to pay the price for the mistakes and the greed of anyone, even if that be my dearest person. So if we are cornered and compelled to make a choice, between safeguarding Gorran Movement’s reputation on one hand or safeguarding the public trust by expelling few members of the Parliament, then have no illusion we will choose the latter. But it is still not too late and there is time in the coming year and few months that left in this Parliament for you to review your conduct and do the following:

1- To those members of Parliament who have applied to purchase the Parliament flats and villas, we have already notified them that they should issue public apologies to the people and their voters, since they were elected on the promise to defend people’s interest and not to pursue their own privileges. They didn’t do that. Therefore, they should resign from the Parliament. Otherwise we will issue a public announcement declaring them no longer members of Gorran since they failed to fulfil their election promises.

2- Your Fraction should submit a draft legislation to decrease the MPs salaries and remove all of the privileges such as free cars, flats and villas that they receive. They should decrease the MPs salaries to be comparable with that of the most senior government employee, and I don’t mean those who have “Special Grades” within the government.

3- Your Fraction should submit a draft legislation to dismantle the life-long pension for the members of the Parliament, and to revoke the laws that allow the MPs to go on retirement well before the civil services retirement age. The draft legislation should guarantee the MPs to return to their previous jobs they occupied before their election, and if they didn’t have a job, then to continue to pay them a salary for one year to ensure that they find employment. This legislation would be in the interest of the people, since it would encourage MPs to work hard in order to retain the confident of the people and secure re-election to Parliament.

4- Sub-divide your fraction into several groups (let us say five) and arrange for each group to visit five different locations in Kurdistan each week, to listen to people’s complaints and suggestions and reported it in writing to the relevant area leaders and ministers, give copies of these reports to the Speaker of the Parliament and follow up these leads in the Parliament Committees. Let each group submit a weekly report to their Gorran Liaison Officer, Mr. Omar Said Ali, stating in their report which one of them failed to carry out their duties and what was the reason for that. Also, just as stated in the constitution of Gorran Movement, it is important to allocate one MP for each city and town council to liaise with them.

5- Do not submit draft legislations individually in any which way. Develop your proposals collectively, in consultation with your Liaison Officer, our Law Chamber, our Economic Unit and our Policy Research Unit. Make sure that the proposals are compatible with Gorran’s work plan. Remember that every proposal has its own suitable time.

6- I will instruct the official website of the Movement and our media channels to give coverage to your activities that merit the importance of your activities. But remember that you were elected to Parliament to be amongst the people and not to appear in the media all the time. Gorran Movement has two more elected fractions, in addition to some 10 Gorran Function Rooms, 40 local Gorran councils in Kurdistan and similar number of Gorran councils abroad, all of which are demanding from us to provide media coverage for their activities. We can only cover the important events. We have full confidant in our media staff to execute their duties faithfully and in the interest of the people we serve.

And finally, I hope that the clarity of this letter would enable you to turn a new page in your lives and in the records of the Parliamentary struggle. Deal with the people with dignity and the voters, as well as my comrades and myself, will be behind you.

I wish you all success.

Your comrade

Nawshirwan Mustafa

On behalf of Gorran Movment

  • 29/01/2012 00:00:00