Tripoli, 8 August:
NTC Chairman Mustafa Abdul Jalil has denied rumours that he will be involved in forming a presidential council following . . .[restrict]the establishment of the National Congress this evening.
Jalil has frequently maintained in the past that his career in politics would end with the dissolution of the NTC, and he has insisted that this position has not changed.
Having brought Libya successfully through the revolution and initial transitional period, the NTC’s tenure will come to an end today when it hands power to the Congress.
The idea of forming a presidential council has recently been aired by NFA chief Mahmoud Jibril as an alternative to having one single head of state. The proposed council would consist of seven members, who would have collective presidential powers.
It is by no means certain, however, that such a council will even come into being, still less what its remit would be if it did.
Although the Constitutional Declaration of 3 August 2011 stipulates that the Congress will have a speaker or ‘president’, and that it will be responsible for appointing a government, no mention is made of what form the government will take; what its relationship with the Congress will be; and whether there will even be a president at all.
In recent days, a number of Congress members have signalled their opposition to the formation of a presidential council precisely because no mention is made of it in the 3 August declaration, arguing that such a decision would pre-empt the constitutional debate about the role of the head of state. [/restrict]