Compromise candidate rejected

Protests over Diyala governorship continue into night as nominee withdraws

DIYALA – Tensions have escalated as protests in support of Governor Muthanna Al-Tamimi continued into the night in Diyala.

The protestors are challenging a proposal by Hadi al-Amiri, leader of the Badr Organization, to appoint Mohammed Jasim Al-Umairi as the new governor. Al-Umairi’s nomination has sparked controversy due to his connection as the son of the current president of the Federal Court.

In a twist, Badr withdrew the nomination of Al-Umairi Saturday afternoon, ostensibly due to him not reaching the lower age limit for the governorship. Al-Umairi is 28, with the lower limit being 30.

The disagreement over the governorship reflects deeper political rifts within Diyala, a province known for its diverse ethnic and sectarian composition.

This political standoff has resulted in widespread demonstrations in Baquba and surrounding areas, where protesters have blocked roads and set up camps.

Al-Amiri’s pushing of Al-Umairi, an effort to front a compromise candidate, has not swayed the public support on the street. Muthanna Al-Tamimi is also a member of the Badr Organization.

Significantly, the dispute has impeded the formation of the local government, with the Diyala Council divided and unable to secure an absolute majority for its leadership. The contention mainly lies between the Badr Organization and Asaib Ahl Al-Haq blocs.