Libya is not a career, but a great responsibility and a liability

Date: 07 May 2014

Like many other Libyans, I have an abiding concern for our national interests. It is most important that all the sons of our great Arab Libyan people make a concerted effort to serve our nation, its security and stability, and to consolidate the social bonds of brotherhood, love, peace, unity and tolerance and constructive cooperation for the general good of our beloved country.

It was therefore with great sadness that I witnessed the events in the National Conference on Sunday 4th of May. This was a process that should have been transparent and democratic – especially because we have had to wait for decades of precious time to arrive the historic moment of choosing the head of Executive power in the country.

Instead, what happened during the so-called “election” for the post of interim President of the Transitional Government has actually increased the political deadlock in which the Conference found itself – and this in a body whose mandate had long expired.

Like all honourable Libyans, I deeply regret to see the way that meeting simply reflected the chaotic situation which has existed since the overthrow of the dictatorial regime that Libyans had to bear for more than four decades.

The resulting chaos underlines the degree to which the warlords have their hands on the political rudder within our country. They are driving our nation towards the abyss, as is clearly demonstrated by the insistence of certain groups on the validity of a decision that can only be viewed with deep suspicion.

Mr Saleh Al-Makhzoom, second Vice President of the National Conference, was elected as a representative of the Muslim Brotherhood, under pressure from the group “Honouring the blood of the Martyrs”. He insisted on conducting the hearing filed by Mr Ezzeddine Al-Awami, a Senior Vice President of the Conference representing the Presidency, to continue the discussion of agenda items that had been adjudicated.

This was a clear violation of our country’s provisional constitutional declaration and a violation of the “constitutional” decision of the Conference in regard to the choice of the Prime Minister. It was also clear manipulation of the rules governing the work of the Conference.

The controversy surrounding the choice of Libya’s Prime Minister reflects the conflict taking place inside the National Conference. A large number of the Libyan people – who’s opinion cannot be ignored – consider that this Conference suffers from almost total paralysis in its performance. This fact will certainly reflect negatively on the election of the new Parliament.

We all saw the reaction to events in the National Conference when on Wednesday, May 7 the situation worsened again in the oil ports, a crisis that was on the way to resolution. The armed overlords of the oilfields announced that they did not accept the results of the elections. This can only serve to increase and deepen the problem and complicate the crisis.

In view of this democratic imbalance, I decided to distance myself from running in the election. Their results were a foregone conclusion before they even started, contrary to all the basic principles of democracy.

The result has disrupted the State institutions and I therefore ask for the following solutions:

To the Honourable Ahmed Maitiq, I say – you must distance yourself from this conflict, and dissociate yourself from the deepening crisis so that Libya can come out of the bottleneck in which it has become entangled by this Conference. You must apologize to the Libyan people for the oath that you took. You should apply for the post that you want when you are able to create a Government of real national reconciliation.

To the National Congress, I say – you must create a caretaker Government, drawn from the existing Government. This Government should perform its duties until the election of the next Parliament, when the country’s President can be elected by popular vote and who can enable the Government to accelerate the pace of our stagnant national economy.

Finally, I say to Mr Ahmed Maitik, if you insist on taking this post you should demand that your supporters within the National Congress, who gave you 121 votes to win confidence in the Government, restart another round of election by secret ballot so that your government can be certain of passing the confidence vote when it is submitted to the Conference later.

The referendum on the new Prime Minister is illegal. The election of Mr Maitiq is void and contrary to the law; it cannot be invoked and implemented. The current Government must continue as a caretaker until an alternative Government is elected with sufficient confidence and in accordance with the proper legal and constitutional procedures.

May Allah help us all to serve Libya.

Long Live Libya

Assalamu Alaikum

Abdul Basit Hasan Igtet

May 7, 2014

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