By Umar Khan.
Tripoli, 20 May:
The NTC has passed Law No 36 freezing the assets not only of Muammar Qaddafi, his family . . .[restrict]and associates, but heads of organisations, several different government-owned companies and private businesses. There are 260 people on the list as well as 78 companies.
The list includes Ahmed Qaddaf Al-Dam (Qaddafi’s cousin, now exiled in Egypt), Musa Ibrahim (the Qaddafi regime spokesman), Musa Kusa (former foreign minister now believed to be in Qatar), Abdullah Mansour Daou (Qaddafi’s personal security chief) and Abdullah Senussi (Qaddafi’s former Intelligence chief). The companies on the list include HIB (Housing and Infrastructure Board, with projects of more than $45 billion), Summa Company (which owns the Mahary Hotel), African Bottling Company (PepsiCo) and the Qaddafi Organisation for Charity.
When contacted by the Libya Herald, the Radisson Blu management of the Mahary Hotel was unavailable to comment on the law.
Husni Bey is the most surprising figure in the list. He provided major financial support for the 17 February Revolution.
Speaking to the Libya Herald, he blasted the decision of the NTC to include his name in the list saying: “It’s criminal! It is a baseless decision done by some people for personal interests. I was imprisoned by the Qaddafi regime seven times. I served three and a half years last time I was imprisoned. We never worked with the former regime.”
When asked how he would respond to this ban, he said, “I will use the media to spread awareness about this unjust ban. It is not the first time I’ve been put through this situation. My personal assets were frozen twice in 1996 & 2007 by the former regime. We never worked with the former regime at any time. It is a company policy that we never work with any government company and we never did.”
Speaking about the NTC he said: “There are many good people in the NTC working for the country but some elements have infiltrated the NTC and want to work for their personal agendas, for their personal interests.
“I am against corruption and strongly support transparency. I have already said it several times that the people’s money was being stolen for 42 years — and it has not stopped in the last year. They need to do something about it.”
He added that there was no reason for his name to be on the list, “It is only because of some people with hidden agendas. They didn’t even write my complete name, it shows that it was added for no other reason but to malign me.”
The spokesman for the NTC, Mohammed Al-Hareizi told Libya Herald that “the names on the list doesn’t mean the people are guilty but only they are under restrictions, pending a judicial investigation. There is no way the list will be changed without the names being properly investigated. If they are cleared after the investigation, the assets will be unfrozen.”
It is reported that there is strong opposition within the NTC to many of the names on the list and that it may be withdrawn in its present form within the next couple of days.
Umar Khan can be found at twitter.com/umarnkhan [/restrict]