Kurdistan Region civil servants petition against KRG’s “My Account” initiative

SULAIMANI, Kurdistan Region — Teachers and civil servants in the Kurdistan Region are advocating for the direct distribution of their wages via Iraqi federal banks. For the third consecutive day, they have commenced petitioning in Sulaimani to reject the Kurdistan Region’s “My Account” initiative and are intending to broaden their initiatives.

Likewise, educators in the Kurdish studies of Kirkuk province are joining the petition, expressing their dissatisfaction with the initiative, citing a perceived lack of trust in it.

“My Account” initiative aims to streamline the process by which public servants receive their salaries via digital banking system.

A teacher from Kirkuk expressed to Zoom News a preference for receiving their salary directly from Iraqi federal banks like Rafidain and Rashid, rather than through private sector banks associated with the Kurdistan Regional Government’s (KRG) My Account initiative.

On Friday, a gathering of teachers and civil servants took place at Sulaimani’s public park, signing the petition to reject the initiative.

So far, over 20,000 teachers and civil servants have signed a petition opposing reliance on “My Account”, Srusht Hawari, member of the province’s protesting teachers, confirmed to Zoom News on Saturday.

“We think this account is where a big chunk of our money goes to waste or gets stolen,” Hawari added.

Currently, more than 240,000 bank accounts have been opened for civil servants, and 120,000 employees have already received their payroll cards, according to the KRG. Nevertheless, the Region’s workforce surpasses 1.2 million employees.

Last month, the Iraqi Federal Court ruled that the Iraqi government should disburse the monthly salaries of the Kurdistan Region’s civil servants directly through federal banks. In return, the KRG must hand over all its oil and non-oil revenues to the central government.

This ruling follows the Kurdistan Region’s loss of the ability to independently export its oil following an arbitration court ruling last year.

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