By Sami Zaptia.
London, 31 December 2020:
With the year coming to an end and the clock ticking in Libya’s timeline to its planned 24 December 2021 elections, UNSMIL has decided to create an Advisory Committee from within the Libyan Political Dialogue Forum (LPDF).
The move comes as the LPDF has failed to agree by the needed majority on one of the proposed mechanisms for choosing Libya’s next interim government, slated to be called the Government of National Unity (GNU), that will guide the country through the 2021 elections.
Addressing yesterday’s LPDF virtual meeting, Acting UNSMIL head, Stephanie Williams said:
24 December 2021 elections are irrevocable achievement and goal
‘‘The clock started on 21 December, setting clear timelines as outlined in the road map, which you have adopted in Tunis and for which I congratulate you again. The election date of 24 December 2021 and the path to these elections are an irrevocable achievement and goal from which we will not retreat. I want to emphasize that.
Deliberations not zero-sum calculus, not power sharing formula but responsibility sharing
I continue to believe that this process will not be able to advance further, will not be able to succeed if the approach that is taken towards these important deliberations is represented by a zero-sum calculus where there are clear winners or losers. I believe that what Libya needs is not a power sharing formula but a formula of sharing responsibility that will take you to these elections.
Process not open-ended
We can’t engage in a continuing open-ended process. We have a clear goal, the elections, and a clear need to unify the institutions. Yet, we’ve been facing this lack of progress on achieving an acceptable level of consensus on a mechanism to select the executive authority
Compromise needed to achieve ultimate goal of elections
Therefore, in my role as the Mediator, I have a professional, personal and moral obligation to address this blockage, preserve this process, and to help lead you to an acceptable compromise which will contribute to achieving the electoral goal, which is the ultimate goal.
It is in this spirit that I have decided that we need to form an advisory committee that will be composed of 15 members of the Dialogue, that will assist us/you in reaching consensus on these contentious issues”