On Thursday, two separate sources confirmed that measures were being taken to remove the Governor of the Central Bank of Iraq. This was due to his failure to control the exchange rate of the US dollar in local markets, as well as the discovery of currency purchase receipts containing fraudulent information.
During a press conference held in the parliament building and attended by a correspondent, Independent MPs Ahmed Majeed and Hadi Al-Salami expressed their concern over the detrimental impact of the increased dollar price on all sectors of the Iraqi economy. They highlighted that the poorest citizens are particularly affected in terms of their daily needs and livelihoods.
He emphasized that the receipts being submitted to the Central Bank through the currency selling window in order to purchase dollars for importing goods are fraudulent and actually a means to smuggle currency out of Iraq. He further stated that the banks purchasing dollars are financially linked to political parties.
He observed that the Central Bank didn’t follow up on the issues he raised and the banks on the blacklist weren’t held responsible. Consequently, he believes that the Governor of the Central Bank and the Prime Minister are to blame for the disorder and uncertainty surrounding the fluctuation of the dollar exchange rate. This situation has directly affected the daily lives and livelihoods of ordinary Iraqi citizens.
In his statement, he stated that they had requested the Governor of the Central Bank to attend a meeting regarding the increase in the dollar exchange rate. However, some groups attempted to protect the governor and prevent him from appearing before the House of Representatives. They plan to utilize all lawful measures accessible under the Constitution in conjunction with independent representatives to resolve this disorder. They are also in the process of removing the Governor of the Central Bank from his position.
Representative Hadi Al-Salami stated that they had sent a letter to the Prime Minister on July 26th. The letter asked for the Central Bank Governor’s assignment to be terminated and for Article 13 of the Central Bank Law No. 56 of 2004 to be implemented. This request was based on Article 61 of the Constitution and House of Representatives Law No. 13 of 2018.
He stated that the termination is in accordance with Article V of the Constitution, which mandates the appointment of ambassadors and officials with special positions upon a recommendation from the Council of Ministers. Additionally, it is based on Article 44(2) of the House of Representatives Law of 2018, which specifies that individuals with agency responsibilities are appointed for a maximum of six months from their appointment date, and the recommending party must suggest a candidate for presentation to the House of Representatives within three months.
During the meeting, Al-Salami brought up concerns about the current Central Bank governor’s mismanagement and inability to control the increasing exchange rate of the dollar against the dinar in the parallel market. Al-Salami also mentioned the governor’s failure to take legal action against banks that were sanctioned by the US for smuggling the dollar and engaging in money laundering. Additionally, the governor refused to announce the daily sales bulletin. As a result, the Prime Minister was asked to take action and remove the current Central Bank governor from their position.