By Sami Zaptia.
London, 13 July 2021:
The House of Representatives (HoR) failed to pass the 2021 budget yesterday at the close of its session. The discussion is to continue in today’s session.
As usual, the HoR did not give any details about proceedings of yesterday’s behind-closed-doors session. It was left to individual members to inform the media.
Yesterday’s session was dominated by disagreements between members and with the Abd Alhamid Aldabaiba government on the budget. The government is still insisting on passing its full budget while some members are insistent on reducing it.
There is a legal debate among members over the method of voting on the budget, between the relative majority and the prescribed majority.
There are three proposals to vote on the budget as well, either as a whole with the development/projects section postponed, or on each section of the budget separately, and the third proposal is to vote according to what has been classified and put forward.
Most members insist on approving the budget due to its importance for the government to run its business.
The dispute over Sovereign Positions continues. There are members and political parties who are calling for the Central Bank of Libya Governor and the head of the High National Election Commission (HNEC) to be kept in their positions until elections are held, with consideration of the rest of the Sovereign Positions.
On the other hand, there are members and other parties calling for a change of all office holders. Some members see this call as a disruptive and obstructionist move.
Elections and the constitutional rule
The House did not discuss the law on the election of the president and electoral districts, according to agenda.
Some members said HNEC is still insisting on the difficulty of holding a referendum on the draft constitution and refuses even to approve it temporarily. Some members considered this interference in legislative matters.
Nevertheless, some members still think it is possible to work on the Hurghada (Egypt) agreement between the High State Council and Parliament to hold one electoral cycle, then work to amend the constitution and hold a referendum on it later – in order to keep to the 24 December election date.