Libya’s Bashagha Rules out Elections without Unified Government


The Libyan Parliament-designated Prime Minister, Fathi Bashagha ruled out holding elections without a unified government, blaming his rival “illegitimate” PM Abdel-Hamid Dbaiba for failing to hold elections in December 2021.

In a televised interview, Bashagha said that “the elections must be held after the legislative parties agree on a constitutional basis.” He noted that there are “indications towards a political action plan from the Parliament and the High Council of State (HCS), under the auspices of the United Nations. This is to reach an agreement that helps Libya move forward in the democratic process.”

Bashagha stressed that the “security establishment must also be unified to hold elections, and that steps to unify the military establishment should begin. The Libyan people are aware of the dangers and that Libya must be one strong country,” he said, claiming that the “financial revenues in Libya are not transparent, and remain unclear.” He added that his government submitted a request to the Attorney General to obtain the oil revenues, “because the Libyan funds are being disposed of illegally.”

He confirmed that his government received only 1.5 billion Libyan dinars during the past year, out of an 89 billion dinar budget. “The 2023 budget has not yet been submitted to Parliament, and another 3 billion has been allocated to the government and has not yet been spent,” he noted.

The PM-designate added that the visit of the CIA Chief to Libya, William Burns “is important and gave hope to the Libyans that the issue is on its way to a solution. The US administration has begun to pay attention to the Libyan file in particular, and realises that any security defect in Libya affects Europe.”

On 10 February 2022, the Libyan Parliament announced the unanimous appointment of Bashagha as the new Prime Minister. But Dbaiba warned that the appointment of a new interim government could lead to war and chaos in the country. He renewed his pledge to only hand power over to an elected government.