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Iraq reconstruction conference will be a flop, experts forecast

Failed reconstruction conference

As the Iraqi reconstruction conference has kicked off in Kuwait, experts say the conference will be an ignominious debacle. The Iran-backed militias IMIS and the Shiite officials within the government will be the top beneficiaries from the conference, they added.
Informed sources said that heated debates took place on corruption, which is running across all the government agencies in Iraq. 
The discussions, according to experts, reflected the real view of the participants on the possibility of going ahead with these plans far from the positions they adopt in front of the cameras.
Administrative corruption was brought to the fore in the landmark event. Many foreign officials who showed up in the event said corruption will impede development and reconstruction plans in the war-shattered country. Their foremost obsession is that the money allocated for the reconstruction will be devoured by the corrupt officials.

They said Iraq has lost billions of dollars siphoned off by corrupt officials who deprived the country of benefiting from the soaring oil prices at the time.
A Kuwaiti official, who attended these discussion, said most of the regional and international representatives who attended the conference on a ceremonial basis. He added the countries which attended the conference intends to offer no financial assistance since there are no guarantees these funds will be channeled for the reconstruction efforts.
"Some officials, while chitchatting, said it plainly that they will never offer support for a government led by militias," the Kuwaiti official noted. 
Member of the Kuwaiti parliament Safaa al-Hashem said in a Twitter post:"The successive Iraqi government failed to handle the reconstruction issue. And no prosperity has been achieved for the people."
"Why shall we give them $ 100 billion? Who will follow up these funds and audit the accounts relating to this money?" she wondered.
Another senior Kuwaiti official said in a report on al-Arab Newspaper, that there is no signal by the conference's organizers that cash money will be raised for Iraq. 
"These countries are afraid these funds will not be delivered to the Iraqi people. They distrust the standing government," he explained. 
He cited threats and blackmailing that foreign firms faced in recent times in Iraq. He also spoke of the bribes offered by these firms due to the chronic bureaucracy.

"This will lead these firms think twice before taking any steps relating to pumping funds in the corruption-ridden nation," he stated.
Funding militias
The conference, according to experts, will boost the influence of the Iranian militias in Iraq. They will be the top beneficiaries from the money that will be raised to restore the cities they destroyed. 
They also expressed surprise at the Kuwaiti call for the conference and mobilizing efforts to get it held. 
"The Kuwaiti government is aware of the fact that the destroyed Sunni cities will not receive even a single penny from this money," they added.
Some Iraqi officials say the expectations from this conference are too high and unrealistic. 
The experts also said the Kuwaiti government has a goodwill in helping Iraq weather the current financial and political limbo. But the Iran-backed militias don’t pass up a single opportunity to seize these funds. 
Other experts told The Baghdad Post an international entity should be formed to follow up these funds. They should also inspect the project that would be carried out on the ground to make sure the money has been delivered to the real beneficiaries: the Iraqi people. 

Last Modified: Tuesday، 13 February 2018 07:41 PM