Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Libya: Panel to draft post-Gaddafi charter

18 February 2014, 17:30

Tripoli - Libyans are on Thursday to elect a panel to draft a new constitution aimed at bringing an end to a chaotic transition since the 2011 overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi.

The polls have aroused none of the enthusiasm of the country's first free elections in July 2012 following four decades of dictatorship.

The constitutional commission is to be made up of 60 members, with equal representation for the North African nation's three regions.

But the Amazigh minority has said it will boycott the polls in protest at its alleged marginalisation in the process.

Six seats on the panel are reserved for women and the same number for minorities, but the two seats set aside for the Amazigh will not be contested because of their boycott.

A candidate and constitutional law professor, Abdelgader Gdoura, stressed that the panel must negotiate with the Amazigh to ensure their future participation.

"Nobody must be excluded," he said.

The charter is to cover key issues such as Libya's system of government, the status of minorities and the role of Islamic sharia law.

But only 1.1 million people have registered to vote, compared with more than 2.7 million in 2012 polls for a General National Congress (GNC) or interim parliament, from an electoral roll of 3.4 million.

"Libyans are disappointed with the people they elected in 2012. Most of them don't feel like going through the same experience," said Fuad al-Kib, a 46-year-old civil servant who has not registered to vote.

Persistent security problems

Voter apathy coincides with persistent security problems and the lack of a clear political roadmap for the country's future.

According to the High National Election Commission, 692 candidates, including 73 women, have registered for the contest in which political parties are barred and participants - aged over 25 - must run as individuals.

The constitution drafted by the elected commission will be put to a referendum.

The 200-member GNC formed after Libya's last election has stirred controversy by extending its original 18-month term until the end of 2014 because of political wrangling that has delayed the constitution.

It stands accused of having failed to head off political crises that have aggravated the anarchy and insecurity rife in post-Gaddafi Libya.

Yielding to popular pressure in the wake of street protests, the GNC on Sunday agreed to hold early polls to elect new transitional authorities rather than wait for the constitution to be finalised.

Discussions are still under way on institutions that might replace the GNC: a new congress, or a parliament and a president.

Ahead of Thursday's polls, the interior ministry has said 25 security personnel will be deployed at each of 1 500 polling stations, which will remain open from 08:00 to 19:00.

The 2012 election was marked by violent incidents, especially in eastern Libya, bastion of Islamist militants who have staged almost daily attacks on the security forces.

Because of security concerns, the Carter Centre has scaled down an election assessment team to six members who will be restricted to Tripoli.



Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Nigeria @ 56: Words to my green f...

A leader’s job is not to dictate, but rather to be respected, admired and be a trustee, of the land we love, with so much potential, a land which should be freer than free. Its still a long way to fufilling our destiny! Read more...

Submitted by
Isaac Asabor263
Recession: An opportunity for Nig...

The recession should be seen as an opportunity for the country’s promotion as long as we all collectively conduct ourselves in a patriotic manner, writes Isaac Asabor.  Read more...

Submitted by
Black and White

We want to imitate the whites in everything because we are ignorant of our inherent originality and content. We spend all our Naira to acquire his inventions because we so oblivious of our natural endowments that we allow him have it for free. Read more...

Submitted by
Nate Nat
Adamawa State University Mubi: A ...

ADSU integrity forum has accused the Sunday Joshua Wugira, a lawyer, of adopting unorthodox tactics by abusing his privilege by attacking the integrity of ADSU Vice Chancellor Dr. Moses Zira Zaruwa, writes a News24 reader. Read more...

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
My Country Nigeria (Part One)

Poetry by Abdulsalam Jubril.

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
Recession, dearth in leadership a...

Every leader has the opportunity to become great and making himself immortal in the lives and hearts of people for generations to come. Will Mr. President seize this opportunity?, questions Abdulsalam Jubril. Read more...