Shengalis to run in the election with PADÊ

As the parliamentary elections set to be held on May 12 draw close in Iraq, excitement grows in Shengal. The Êzidî Democracy and Freedom Party (PADÊ) is running in the elections for the first time with two candidates, saying, “Vote for your will”.

The elections to be held on May 12 in Iraq and Southern Kurdistan are of historical importance for the people of Shengal. Shengalis say they are participating in elections with their own will for the first time. The Êzidî Democracy and Freedom Party (PADÊ) is running for the parliament with two candidates in the 169th list.

The Êzidî people have faced 74 genocidal attacks throughout history. These great massacres are called “firman”s, and the latest firman of August 3, 2014 against Shengal by ISIS gangs has been recognized as a genocide attempt. Thousands were killed in these attacks, and thousands more were abducted. Women and girls were sold as sex slaves in slave markets. Tens of thousands of people were forced out of their homes.

The region has long suffered from discriminatory policies as well. After the Saddam regime fell in 2003, the economic and political development projects did not knock on Shengal’s door. Despite their legal right to do so, they were never able to determine their own candidates with their own will. Parties founded with the Êzidî name in their title sought not to serve the people but their own interests. Previous candidates were determined by village chiefs and clan leaders. The people were not included in the discussions. This continued until the genocidal attacks by ISIS. But those who turned their backs on the people and fled at first sight of trouble still did attempt to say they represent the people.

After the resistance that started with the struggle of the guerilla and the self defense units that were formed in Shengal defeated ISIS gangs and cleared the city, a new era began for the people of Shengal.

New political, social and economic organizations were formed in the city and a democratic self-rule was declared. PADÊ was founded during this resistance and reconstruction, and has great sympathy in Shengal. PADÊ receives popular support due to their service to the people, and the party will have two candidates in the 169th list with the motto, “Vote for your will”. The candidates are Simêr Derwêş Xelef El-Şêx and Xwedêda Mirad Reşo Pîso. The PADÊ candidates were among the people during the August 3 firman. PADÊ is always close with the people and takes interest in their issues, that is why they garner great sympathy and support. With just weeks left until the elections, the people of Shengal are preparing to be represented in the Parliament.