By Libya Herald reporter.
Malta, 16 February 2015:
In January, Libya Herald ran . . .[restrict]a story about the confusion and political in-fighting at the Libyan Post and Telecommunications Information Company (LPTIC), as its Chairman refrained from turning up for work at its Tripoli headquarters after the Tripoli occupation by Libya Dawn forces.
The LPTIC is the holding company that controls all of Libya’s seven state-dominated ITC companies: Libyana, LTT, Hatif Libya, Al-Madar, Al-Jeel Al-Jadeed, LITC and Bareed Libya.
At the time of writing, Libya Herald had attempted to contact its Chairman, Faisel Gergab for his side of the story, but was unable to establish contact. Libya Herald has since succeeded in contacting Mr Gergab, who has taken up his right to a reply.
‘‘As a result of the deterioration of the security situation since July 2014, all major international vendors and contractors demobilized from Tripoli’’, Gergab told Libya Herald in a written statement.
‘’It further became evident that the ICT sector was a target by the various armed groups and as such the safety and security of a number of our staff was under serious threat. We, therefore, made a conscious decision like many other banks, businesses and institutions to temporarily mange our operations from alternative locations from inside and outside of Libya’’, he added.
‘‘As such, on 30 October 2014, the matter was referred to the Libyan Attorney General requesting that appropriate legal steps are taken in relation to these actions in order to hold the relevant individuals accountable for any administrative and criminal loss that LPTIC and the Libyan telecommunications sector as a whole may suffer as a result of these illegal actions., Gergab explained’’
‘‘I have repeatedly stated that LPTIC is a neutral sovereign institution that is non-political / non-partisan aiming to provide services to its customers and to focus on modernizing the ICT sector, build capacity, and work towards creating the infrastructure required for a service/knowledge based economy in Libya’’, Gergab said, responding to accusations that he is a House of Representatives supporter.
‘‘The LPTIC board of directors and Chairman remain committed to preserving the integrity of the Libyan ICT sector and the provision of satisfactory services during these exceptional and challenging times’’.
‘’Therefore, any individual or persons claiming to act on behalf of LPTIC without legal authorization from myself as the chairman of the company will be subjected to criminal judicial proceedings’’.
‘’We are currently taking all necessary legal actions inside and outside Libya against those who attempt to vandalize the telecommunications infrastructure and abuse of LPTIC’s assets’’, Gergab concluded, regarding the latest efforts by the Tripoli administration to wrestle control of the LPTIC from him.
Furthermore, it will be noted that in Tripoli, and under the new GNC/Libya Dawn backed National Salvation Government, a government without any international recognition, an Ordinary Annual General Meeting of the LPTIC was held on 12 February.
In a brief statement released by the pro Libya Dawn LANA news agency, it stated that during the AGM meeting attended by Telecommunications Minister Sami Al-Gintari, the report of the Steering Committee as well as that of the Oversight Authority of LPTIC were discussed.
The news report also said that the AGM looked into the appointment of a Chairman and members of the board as well as the Oversight Authority and the appointment of an outside auditor.
It did not mention the move by Gergab to freeze LPTIC assets or safeguard his position by taking action with the Attorney General. Nor did the report state or imply that a new board or Chairman were appointed, which implies that Gergab may have succeeded in freezing the status quo of the LPTIC through the Attorney General’s office. [/restrict]