Mohammed Takala Elected as Head of Libya’s High Council of State

Mohammed Takala Elected as Head of Libya's High Council of State
Mohammed Takala Elected as Head of Libya's High Council of State

In a dramatic twist of political events this Sunday, Mohammed Takala emerged victorious in the elections for the presidency of Libya’s High Council of State (HCS). Outshining his competitor, Khaled Mishri, Takala secured 67 votes in the run-off round, compared to Mishri’s 62 votes.

With this outcome, Mishri departs from the leadership post after almost five years at the helm, since his initial election on April 4th, 2018. Out of the total 137 council members, 131 were present for the vote, with one blank ballot noted. The vote count took place under the watchful eyes of representatives from each candidate.

Mohammed Takala is not new to the Libyan political scene. He was first elected as a Deputy in the General National Congress on July 7th, 2012, representing the Tenth Electoral District. Following the Skhirat Agreement in 2015, the General National Congress was renamed to the HCS. Notably, Takala headed the Economic and Social Projects Development and Enhancement Committee within the HCS and also took part in the National Dialogue Forum in Geneva 2021.

In the initial round of Sunday’s elections, Mishri led with 49 votes, while Takala trailed with 39 out of 129 attending members. Other contenders, Naema al-Hami and Nakhi Mukhtar, secured 4 and 36 votes respectively, with two blank ballots cast.

Interestingly, just last August, the HCS had re-elected Mishri as its President with 65 endorsements against his opponent Ajili Abu Sidil’s 50.

The HCS holds its presidential office elections annually. The office structure comprises a president, a first Deputy representing the South, a second Deputy representing the East, while both the President and the HCS’ Secretary represent the West, in line with the HCS’ internal regulations.

Since its establishment in December 2015, the HCS saw Abdul Rahman al-Sweihli serve two consecutive terms, after which Khaled Mishri dominated with five consecutive terms as President.

With a fresh face now leading the HCS, Libya anticipates new directions and decisions in its ongoing political dialogue.