By Sami Zaptia.
London, 20 July 2016:
The Faiez Serraj-led Presidency Council and Government of National Accord has ‘‘borrowed’’ LD 1.5 billion for urgently needed emergency spending.
The loan is from the Central Bank of Libya (CBL) and will be deposited by the CBL in the PC/GNA’s Emergency Fund account. The money will be disbursed through the Ministry of Finance, the PC/GNA decree (No. 72/2016) dated 16th June but published yesterday, revealed.
The PC/GNA decree said that the LD 1.5 billion will be deposited by the CBL in three LD 500 million tranches or upon the request of the PC/GNA. The decree stipulated that the first LD 500 tranche would be deposited into the Emergency Fund account immediately upon the publication of this decree.
The decree said that the money will be spent according to decisions taken by the PC/GNA as per the list attached to the decree. However, at the time of writing, the PC/GNA failed to publish the attachment.
It will be recalled that although the House of Representatives (HoR) has accepted the PC/GNA in principle through a vote, it has failed and consistently refused over the last six months to vote on the GNA. The HoR is the sole legitimate Libyan legislature recognized by the Libyan Political Agreement (LPA) as well as the international community through UN Security Resolution 2259.
However, the LPA, the UN Security Council Resolution and international community recognizes the PC/GNA as the sole executive Libyan authority.
The HoR, however, insists that until it votes-in the GNA, its Abdullah Thinni-led government is still the sole legitimate Libyan government and as a result no budget has been passed by the HoR for the PC/GNA.
This lack of an official budget for the PC/GNA has totally handicapped the PC/GNA and prevented it from being able to govern and take urgently needed effective action against a myriad of problems such as insecurity, power cuts, the bank cash-crisis, medicine shortages, internally displaced people etc.
This emergency loan is seen as an attempt by the PC/GNA to bypass both the financial impasse and its legal impasse with the HoR.