By Ahmed Elumami.
Tripoli, 23 January 2014:
President of the General National Congress (GNC) Nuri Abu Sahmain and his two deputies have been . . .[restrict]empowered with Commander-in-Chief duties to deal with the continued clashes in Sebha and the overall deteriorating security situation.
The GNC commissioned Abu Sahmain, first deputy president Saleh Makhzoum and second deputy Ezzdin Awami in a unanimous vote this week. They will have Commander-in-Chief powers for a one-month period. This was initially misunderstood by some media sources to be reinstating Abu Sahmain to the actual role of Commander-in-Chief, a position he briefly held in 2013.
“It is not true that Abu Sahmain has been appointed Commander-in-Chief again,” National Security Congressional Committee member Sulaiman Al-Haj told the Libya Herald. “That commission was pulled from him because it did not have the required quorum.”
Al-Haj said that the main reason for this latest commission was because of the increased security problems now faced by the country, especially with regard to the unrest in Sebha. Military decisions needed to be taken swiftly, he said.
“If they want to change or pass any laws, they will have to put these before Congress, but for urgent security matters, they can make the decisions,” Benghazi Congressman Alaa Magarief told this paper. He added that decisions would be made in conjunction with military authorities and the government.
In August 2013, Abu Sahmain appointed himself Commander-in Chief, without putting it before the GNC. He was forced to hand the role to Minister of Defence Abdullah Al-Thini later that month, after Congress members said it was wrong for him to hold two positions of power. [/restrict]