The Manifesto was launched on 23 December, 2017. The public response from a broad cross section of Iraqi society has been widespread and overwhelmingly supportive. The feedback confirms that the message of the Manifesto has touched a critical nerve and has opened new avenues of debate on the future course for our country. That is precisely what the Manifesto had sought: By setting out its vision for the country, the Manifesto has challenged all of Iraq's political leaders and opinion makers, and the engaged citizenry, to address directly the vital issues regarding the future of the country.
The first phase of the evolution of the Manifesto is now complete. Three years of preparations, discussions and meetings which saw the Manifesto pass through many drafts, has culminated in the final document that was released to the public. We are proud to say that this has been an entirely Iraqi project. We benefitted undoubtedly from the experience of other countries but we were determined that the Manifesto reflects Iraqi concerns and priorities. We reject the culture of dependence that has led to our future being mapped according to the will, desires and standards of outside parties. We believe that Iraqis have the knowledge, talent, experience and above all confidence to fashion their own future.
Over the next few weeks and months, the Manifesto, and this website, will be overseen by a transitional team working under my guidance. The team will collect, examine and incorporate proposals for improving the drafting and range of the Manifesto. This final version of the Manifesto will be presented to a founding conference of 'The Manifesto Group', to be held in Baghdad towards the end of February/early March 2018.The team will also prepare for the establishment of the permanent organizational structures for the Manifesto. It is anticipated that a 20-person steering committee will be nominated at the conference. The steering committee will be the highest executive authority for 'The Manifesto Group'. The steering committee will elect a presiding chairman and an official spokesperson.
The Manifesto is not intended to form the basis of a new political party. Neither is it the undeclared platform for the political ambitions of any single individual or group. However, it is what we have called it- A Plan for National Regeneration. Any plan, especially one that seeks to fashion a national vision, cannot be effected unless it has widespread support and is arrived at through a process of debate and consultation. We intend to do that. In the months to come, The Manifesto Group will organise workshops, seminars, colloquia, debates, and develop a strong media presence, to spread the message of the Manifesto. We will seek to have the goals and objectives of the Manifesto adopted in whole or in part by Iraq's political, civil and religious leaders.
A country unified by a shared vision and a commitment to see the vision realised can only succeed.
Ali Abdul Amir Allawi