UNSMIL’s Williams warns against spoilers during her closing address at the first virtual Libyan Political Dialogue Forum

By Sami Zaptia.

London, 28 October 2020:

During her closing address Monday at the first virtual meeting of the Libyan Political Dialogue Forum, Acting UNSMIL head Stephanie Williams warned that ‘‘there are also many who are pursuing the political process and seeking, for personal and narrow purposes, to corrupt and disrupt your path and to introduce it into catacombs of interpretation that will lead to a loss of vision and purpose’’.

Here is her full address:

‘‘Dear attendees, ladies, members of the Libyan Political Dialogue Forum,

Today we have heard the recommendations and summaries of your Libyan brothers from various tracks that are an essential part of the mission’s consultative and consultative endeavours with the various components of the Libyan people. We stand together now burdened with the amount of challenges facing the country and the political process, knowing that we are on the right track and on the verge of a political solution that will restore the Libyans their state, your state, their sovereignty and their stability.

Ladies and gentlemen,

You hope and you have to worry about the hopes and fears of Libyans and they hope that you will receive assurances and assurances, which places great responsibilities on you.  I regret to emphasize the warning that there are also many who are pursuing the political process and seeking, for personal and narrow purposes, to corrupt and disrupt your path and to introduce it into catacombs of interpretation that will lead to a loss of vision and purpose.  Therefore, let us simplify things, and emphasize what libyans have said over and over again — in our consultations with them — and say it today, that Libyans want, as I mentioned this morning, security, stability, dignity and respect, they want a decent life and they want to end absurd conflicts, money-laundering and insecurity, they want a state that they are proud of, embrace and nurture their human and legal rights from the far south to the far east and the far west.

We have heard from Libyans that, despite their different and sometimes regional demands, they yearn for unity.  Unity that begins with the unification of institutions and the improvement of the lives of the Libyan citizen, whom God has blessed with abundant well-being, while living deprived of the most basic necessities of life amid the deterioration of services and worsening crises in all vital sectors. The Libyan people accept only to be one people, enjoying a spirit of brotherhood and coexistence.  This unity begins with politics and the unification of institutions, starting at the top of the pyramid, the executive branch.

Libyans talked about legitimacy and their rejection of what exists and they do not see themselves in the existing bodies and therefore demand legitimacy that was and still is in crisis in Libya.  Therefore, we must renew legitimacy in all frameworks by going as quickly as possible, in the most rational way to presidential and parliamentary elections, as confirmed by the Berlin outputs and Security Council resolutions 2510 and 2542.  Libyans want effectiveness from their institutions and not waste money, they want roads, electricity and liquidity, they want to end the quota and work to enhance efficiency by exiting personal interests and entering into the methodology of good governance, and supporting Libyan institutions through existing local competencies capable of introducing a spirit of renewal into this entity seeking to recover.

Here, I would like to rely on the need to move forward with administrative reforms related to administrative decentralization, to activate the role of municipalities as soon as possible and to bring young people and women intensively into the state organs and institutions. Personally, I insist on this, especially with regard to women. We should see women play their role and have positions and not formal ministries, to be in sovereign, financial and security ministries, which is very important.

Many have tried several ways to resolve the internal situation in Libya. Unfortunately, the path of war has been tried, and this experience has shown that the military option is unable to resolve the situation in Libya and that the continuation of the situation as it is will fuel the local conflict and increase the opportunities for unconstructive external interventions.

The economic paper has been used through oil cutting and through malicious practices in the distribution and expenditure of resources as well, and these attempts have made the situation worse and we have heard in the economic intervention the urgent need to consolidate economic institutions and speed up the implementation of the necessary reforms in all sectors.  It is therefore imperative to return to political dialogue to reach what the Libyans want.

We stand in the face of a changing landscape now that there is some economic improvement and improvement in the security situation, a great improvement in fact, a great improvement, and an international and regional awareness that the Libyan conflict can drag the region as a whole into a war that no one can appreciate its consequences. We are also facing an internal scene of a exhausted people, moaning under the weight of poor living conditions, lack of law control, corruption, mismanagement and failure to provide services throughout Libya without exception.

There has become a political awareness that the beginning of addressing the imbalance in the political system stems from the unification of institutions and the formation of a unified government with independence, sovereignty and effectiveness that will lead the next stage to reach elections that restore the legitimate and sovereignty of the country that is missing in Libya.  This is what Libyans have confirmed in the many dialogue meetings that preceded the preparation for the all-inclusive meeting in Ghadames, which unfortunately did not take place, and this is also what the recommendations of the youth, women and mayors of municipalities we heard from them today have been made.  This is what has resulted from all international tours from Paris to Palermo to Abu Dhabi and to Berlin and its outputs.

So I say there’s no time to waste, no time to get the country into a stall i’m going to keep the situation as it is especially after Mr. Fayez Al-Sarraj announced his intention to step down as soon as there is a political consensus that allows him to do so.  We know that there are many and big issues, so this track has been designed on several rounds and topics to move forward with determination and rationality in order to reach the appropriate ground to enter the electoral process and end the transition.  We set up the tent and invite you to fill it with what you see fit.

The first tent or chamber will be in Tunisia on November 9th and will focus on ways, machinery and criteria for the unification of the executive. This phase follows a road map that will be drawn up in partnership with you, aimed at improving the services of the citizen and starting preparations for the upcoming elections on a solid constitutional ground that will lead to the establishment of permanent legitimacy and structure for the political process in Libya.  Thank you for your time today, thank you for raising your personal ambitions and thank you for your homeland and see you soon on a direct, deep and productive tour that restores optimism about the solution to the Libyans.

Thank you so much for this day, and I also want to thank all the women, youth, mayors and experts who have made the presentations, as well as UNDP. I am very happy and God willing, I will see you in Tunisia soon’’.

(Unofficial translation from the Arabic text)

 

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