By Hadi Fornaji.
Tripoli, 19 September:
The western entrance to Misrata was blocked for several hours yesterday evening by around 80 men following . . .[restrict]a work and pay dispute with the Interior Ministry.
Traffic along the coastal road was brought to a standstill for between three to four hours, with protesters only allowing emergency vehicles including ambulances and fire engines to pass.
The president of the Misrata Local Council told the Libya Herald today that many of those involved in the blockade were due to start work with the Interior Ministry, but had been unable to do so owing to extensive delays in processing their forms.
“These people wanted to start work and to receive their salaries”, Saleem Baitelamal said.
“They had previously been sent on a training course to Jordan, but their certificates have not yet been sent back to Libya and the whole process of getting them to work has been delayed”.
Asked why the men had taken such a drastic step as to blockade a road into Misrata, Baitelmal said they felt the need to “create an event to get the government to pay attention”.
Baitelmal said that his council was working together with the Interior Ministry to resolve the issue.
“We have told them we will sort out the problem by next week, but that if we do not, they can continue their protest outside the Interior Ministry. We have asked them not to block any more roads”. [/restrict]