By Libya Herald reporters.
Tobruk/Tunis, 21 April 2016:
Some hundred members of the House of Representatives (HoR) have declared their support for the . . .[restrict]proposed Government of National Accord led by prime minister-designate Faiez Serraj. In a statement in which they condemned their colleagues who had again prevented a formal meeting of the House, they expressed their commitment to LPA as the “only way out of the Libyan crisis”.
However, they also said they wanted the controversial Article No. 8 of the LPA’s additional provisions to be deleted. Under it, the Presidency Council is supposed to appoint or reappoint heads of major military, security and civilian posts within 20 days of the LPA being signed. Many see the article as an anti-Hafter move.
The statement came after another day of drama at the HoR. It had started with efforts to mediate a compromise by a group of GNA opponents and supporters. However, this eventually descended into chaos with both sides reportedly shouting at each other. Led by first and second deputy presidents Emhemed Shouaib and Ahmaid Huma, the GNA supporters then left the Dar Es Salam hotel that has served as the HoR venue and reassembled at another hotel nearby where they agreed their statement.
There was, however, no formal vote to approve either the LPA or the GNA.
Instead, the supporters called for the HoR to endorse the LPA, adding that the latter should take its oath of office before parliament no later than the end of next week. This should at a venue to be determined by the office of the HoR presidency, they said.
In addition to condemning those members who had physically prevented any session from debating the GNA, the statement also criticised HoR president Ageela Saleh for his continued reluctance to attend sessions as well as for not taking punitive action against the opponents. The latter’s actions, it read, were “incompatible with the code of conduct” of the HoR.
An HoR official put the number of those who today declared their support for the GNA at 102 and those opposed at between 55 and 60.
In a reaction to today’s events, UN Special Envoy Martin Kobler criticised those who prevented the vote.
“I find it regrettable that yet again a clear majority of members of the House of Representatives are denied the opportunity to exercise their intrinsic democratic right as elected representatives of the Libyan people to uphold the pivotal role of the House as a legislative and monitoring body at this critical juncture of the political process’,” he said in a statement.
Taking note of the GNA supporters’ declaration, he paid tribute “to the spirit and courage of parliamentarians who gathered in Tobruk over the past few days”. He urged them to “remain faithful to their constituents” and to carry out their responsibilities “without obstruction, threat or intimidation”. [/restrict]