Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Is the GNC in Libya being bribed ? who are we trying to placate?

Last time a Prime Minister ( Dr Mustafa Abushagur ) was proposed in Libya and he in turn submitted his choice for government, he was summarily dismissed with a vote of no confidence from our General National Congress ( GNC). The GNC was elected by the Libyan people in July this year. The GNC is composed of 200 people who are the legislative branch of Libya's government and who will vote/agree on who the members of the executive branch will be such as prime minister and minister to run the government. This was an embarrassing fiasco and he walked right into it without consulting  thinking he could get away with actually proposing members from the party that won the majority seats? I really don't know on whose toes he must have stepped among the  various factions, parties, foreign agendas and independents  who were unable to agree on how to distribute the Libyan cake.

Another PM , Mr Ali Zidan was proposed and accepted and had two weeks to propose a government. This guy must have learnt a lesson because  interestingly a few days before the deadline a decree was leaked whereby the president of the GNC signed a resolution that grants each of the 200 members a loan of 45,000 Libyan Dinars to allegedly purchase a car! That's a total of 9 million Dinars can you imagine?  A deluge of accusations were flying all over social media mostly by citizens disappointed at the materialism and  exposed self interest of the GNC members some even jokingly saying that finally Libya's riches have been divided among  200 poor families in Libya in an indirect reference to Gaddaffi's style of giving more benefits to his inner circle while all the time promising to support the Libyan families in need.

While Libyans are understandably disillusioned with all the seemingly irresponsible behaviour of our elected officials and civil servants and the dashing of their hopes, I'm not sure if anyone has stopped to think that perhaps this was a fantastically smart move from all those involved ! why ? because "Congressmen seemed broadly satisfied with the names, [and]  this time members have agreed to vote on the government as a whole. It is believed that this time the government will pass." [source]

Why all the confidence and why now  ?  Could it be that 9 million Libyan Dinars ( approximately 7 million US$) have just bought the approval of the whole GNC. Interesting idea to contemplate no? It's quite possible  bribery is nothing new in politics and it helps smooth out problems. On the other hand the proposed list has 32 ministers. 32  for 6 million people!  I am thinking it's excessive but if that will make Libyans happy and calm the specter of regionalism maybe it's the right price to pay or is that to placate the parties, militias and various agendas ?  Is this the compromise ? obviously we are not able to form coalition governments because of our overall weak parties because we are unable to agree on anything hence these 32 ministries and the 200 GNC members . Looks like some interesting times ahead... and we still don't have the 60 who will be drafting the constitution. We are looking at epic decision making paralysis!

Why is everyone treating Libya as a big cow to be milked and then to jump the boat once it capsizes?There is plenty of cake for everyone let's just have a bit of trust and patriotism.