Al-Mishri describes the removal of Bashagha as "absurd", calls on the House of Representatives to agree on a "clear" roadmap for elections

Alwasat - Cairo Tue 16 May 2023, 11:48 PM
alwasat radio

The head of Libya's High Council of the State, Khaled Al-Mishri, called on the House of Representatives to agree with the council on a “clear road map” that leads to elections under a small unified government to hold elections and end the transitional period, urging the house to stop what he described as “extensive issuance of laws” not required at the current stage.

Al-Mishri’s call came after the House of Representatives voted by majority to suspend Government of National Stability Prime Minister Fathi Bashagha and refer him to an investigation.

The house assigned the Minister of Finance, Osama Hammad, to assume the duties of prime minister, according to a statement by spokesman Abdullah Bliheg.

Al-Mishri also described, in a series of tweets, the decision of the House of Representatives as "political absurdity."

He added, “They appointed Fathi Bashagha as head of a new government and approved his government in a non-transparent manner, now they are issuing a decision to suspend him in a suspicious manner, to say the least.”

Bashagha's Removal

"The House of Representatives voted unanimously to suspend the chief of government Fathi Bashagha and open an investigation against him," said the House spokesman Abdullah Bliheg after a closed-door meeting in Benghazi.

The chamber had picked Bashagha in February last year to lead a government to replace that of Prime Minister Abdulhamid Dabaiba, who sits in Tripoli.

Since his failed attempts to force Dabaiba out, Bashagha has been based in the central city of Sirte.

House of Representatives member Abdelmoneim Al-Arfi said that the dismissal of Bashagha being added to the parliament’s agenda surprised a number of deputies but added there has been chatter about forming a mini-government entrusted with conducting elections.

Member Jibril Wahida explained that Bashagha was unable to take power in Tripoli or reach the elections and has been “spending from emergency funds outside of the budget allocated to his government". Adding, "he spent money that we knew nothing about and when we tried to discuss the matter with him, we did not receive any answers."