His Excellency President Masoud Barzani, Kurdistan Region President Nechirvan Barzani, Prime Minister of the Kurdistan Region Masrour Barzani, the Speaker of the Iraqi Council of Representatives Mohammed al-Halbousi, a number of government and party officials, representatives of countries and academics attended the fifth graduation ceremony of the American University of Kurdistan (AUK) in Duhok on May 28.
The following is a readout of the speech delivered by President Nechirvan Barzani:
Your Excellency President Masoud Barzani,
Your Excellency Mr. Mohammed Al-Halbusi, Speaker of the Iraqi Parliament
Mr. Sheikh Khalifa Tahnoon
We are pleased to have you with us at this ceremony.
Dear relatives of the graduates,
I am pleased to be with you in this year’s graduation ceremony of American University of Kurdistan in Duhok. I warmly congratulate the graduates and wish them further success.
I congratulate the parents, families of the graduates, the teachers, the presidency and the board of trustees of the university. You have fulfilled a great and sacred duty. God bless and thank you.
The graduation of another class of young people from Kurdistan and Iraq, or from anywhere else, is a source of pride and joy. You, dear graduates, have acquired new and modern knowledge. Now you are ready for another stage of life, which is the stage of work, service, participation and active partnership in the development of the country and society.
The country expects you to play your part. Each of you should innovate in your own field and create job opportunities for yourselves and those around you with new and constructive ideas. Work successfully to develop, strengthen and diversify the economy.
Provide successful scientific and professional ideas and views to find solutions to the country’s problems and crises in all areas. To improve the standard of living and society and move to a better future.
You must work together and coordinate with your colleagues and counterparts in other universities in Kurdistan, Iraq and the world. Benefit from each other’s knowledge. Build bridges with the authorities and the country’s administration with innovative ideas, suggestions and constructive criticism. Participate in better governance of the country, so that together we can build a stronger Kurdistan and a better future for our generations.
You and the new generation of Kurdistan must make the most of modern technology and scientific progress. You can develop working remotely, at home, with companies, private and public sectors in the Kurdistan Region, Iraq and even abroad and in addition to finding job opportunities, thereby becoming a good ambassador for your country around the world.
It is now work, duty and responsibility. When you start working, you must put all your abilities to work responsibly and professionally according to work ethic. Innovate and ensure its development and success. To do this, you must always work with an open mind and constantly make changes for the better.
There are successful examples of university and college graduates. They have established their own jobs and created job opportunities for others. This is a source of hope and joy. We are proud to see our youth trying with high desire and determination and prove themselves in any field of work and service. They feel responsible and accountable.
Life is always progressing and changing. As long as you live, you must constantly learn and update with the latest developments. From this point of view, as a very important priority, the Kurdistan Region must always pay special attention to the quality and scientific level and renewal of curricula. We must always keep pace with developments in order to remain a vibrant society and join the advanced world.
I’m sure each of you has dozens of different ideas for each area of life. For the economy, for work, for politics, for management. Each of you dreams of becoming prominent in your field. I want to assure you that with your efforts, perseverance and determination to succeed, just as you succeeded today and graduated from university, you can make your ideas and dreams come true with the same spirit of determination, perseverance and effort.
Therefore, I would like to tell you and all graduates of Kurdistan universities and colleges: Do not rely only on working in the public sector. Just as you have proven yourselves in education, you can prove yourselves in creating job opportunities and innovation. For this, you must cooperate with the market and the private sector and the Kurdistan Regional Government will undoubtedly support you.
Everyone is aware that following the agreement of the State Administration Coalition to form a federal Iraqi government, a kind of political stability has emerged in the country. The Iraqi people in general and our friends around the world are looking forward to the positive consequences of this agreement and have placed their hopes on it for a better future.
It is a matter of deep concern and disappointment if some parties try to obstruct the agreements and the understanding between the parties. This kind of treatment and attempts to violate the constitutional rights of the Kurdistan Region, is never acceptable and will not benefit any party and Iraq and the political stability of the country. This is only a repetition of a failed experiment that has always ended to the detriment of Iraq and all its communities. Therefore, I call on all parties to abide by the agreements and protect the political process and stability of the country.
The right way to overcome the problems and crises in Iraq is to adhere to agreements and understandings between the parties in general and the parties of the State Administration Coalition in particular. An Iraq that brings us all together must be one in which all constitutional rights of all communities are protected and respected. History has proved this and we must all learn lessons from the past.
Both in Iraq and the Kurdistan Region, people are tired of and unhappy with political problems and conflicts. We need to reflect on ourselves and put the highest interests of the country above everything else. Only through unity, mutual acceptance and solidarity can we protect the federal structure and constitutional rights of the Kurdistan Region and move towards a better future.
Finally, dear graduates, I congratulate you once again and wish you more success in your future life, work and duties. You and all other Kurdish youth who graduate from any university and college are our future leaders, and source of pride and hope for the country.
Good evening and have a nice time everyone.
Thank you very much.