By Sami Zaptia.
London, 21 April 2021:
During yesterday’s session, the House of Representatives (HoR) approved the appointment of Sideeg Al-Sour, the Head of the Investigations Department at the Attorney General’s Office, as the new Attorney General.
HoR Official Spokesperson Belheeg said yesterday: “Today, a majority of the representatives attending voted to approve Mr. Sideeg Al-Sour as Attorney General’’.
The appointment ends a lengthy period without an Attorney General and ends a political and jurisdictional tug-of-war over who has the authority post 2011 to appoint the Attorney General.
Indeed, in July 2014, the Libyan Supreme Court ruled that the parliament at the time, the General National Congress (GNC) did not have the right to appoint the Attorney General.
It ruled that the government had the right to appoint the post.
The ruling had been triggered by GNC’s decision, on 10 June 2014, to appoint Sideeg Al-Sour in place of Abdelgader Radwan who was reaching retirement age on 30 June.
In the row that followed, both Radwan and the head of the Supreme Court accused Congress of interfering in the judiciary. The Libyan Judges Organisation (LJO) likewise condemned it and demanded Congress to rescind it. First Deputy GNC head Ezzidden Al-Awami said that the decision was invalid because the session at which it was taken was inquorate, and Sour did the honourable thing in the circumstances and refused the appointment.
Ultimately, it is hoped that the appointment will hasten the wheels of Libyan justice with hundreds if not thousands of cases pending. There is a huge need for the perception that justice is being served out at a time of much suspected illegality, illegitimacy and corruption.