By George Grant.
Benghazi, 9 July:
Mahmoud Jibril’s National Forces Alliance has reportedly taken 50-60 per cent of available votes in Benghazi, more . . .[restrict]than all of the other 19 parties standing in the city combined.
Both the Justice & Construction Party and the National Front are understood to have received 10-15 per cent of the vote apiece although Justice & Construction is believed to have clinched second place. The Nation Party reportedly trails in fourth with 3-8 per cent of the vote. If confirmed, that means that the remaining 16 parties may have received little more than 10 per cent of the vote between them.
The results have yet to be officially announced, with these figures having been provided by officials at the HNEC in Benghazi and a senior political party figure in the city.
The results add additional weight to previous reports that the NFA has secured a massive victory in Saturday’s elections, with sources saying it may have taken 60-65 per cent of available votes nationwide. In Tripoli, there have been reports that the NFA has secured as much as 80 per cent of the vote. 11 of the 80 seats available to political parties in the National Conference are located in Benghazi.
“In some polling stations here in Benghazi, Jibril’s party took several hundred votes, with other big parties receiving just a dozen or so between them”, an HNEC official told the Libya Herald.
In a related development the Nation Party’s lead candidate in Benghazi, Lamia Abu Sidra, told this paper that the party was in no hurry to take Jibril up on his offer to join a “grand coalition”.
“We are in no rush to join a coalition and be part of the government”, she said. We are ready to play the opposition role actually”. Yesterday, the Nation Party said that it would be considering Jibril’s offer over the course of today.
There has been no word of the intentions of other parties, but the Justice & Construction party is believed to have been in discussion with the NFA about the possibility of forming an alliance since before the elections.
Final results are expected over the next few days, although there have been suggestions they could be announced as early as this evening. [/restrict]