2012 Libyan parliamentary election
  (Redirected from 2012 Libyan General National Congress election)
Elections for a General National Congress (GNC)[1] were held in Libya on 7 July 2012, having been postponed from 19 June.[2][3][4] They were the first elections since the overthrow and death of longtime ruler Muammar Gaddafi a year earlier, the first free national elections since 1952,[4] and only the second free national elections since Libya gained independence in 1951.
2012 Libyan General National Congress election
← 19657 July 20122014 →
200 seats in the General National Congress
(80 seats for political parties, 120 for individual candidates)
101 seats needed for a majority
LeaderMahmoud JibrilMohamed SowanMohamed el-Magariaf
Leader since201220112011
Seats won39173
Popular vote714,769152,52160,592
LeaderAbdelrahman SewehliAli Tarhouni
PartyUFHNCPWadi Al-Hayah Party
Leader since201220122012
Seats won222
Popular vote66,77259,4176,947
Prime Minister before election
Elected Prime Minister
Once elected, the General National Congress was to appoint a Prime Minister and Cabinet.[5] The GNC was originally to be charged with appointing a Constituent Assembly to draw up Libya's new constitution, but the National Transitional Council (NTC) announced on 5 July that the Assembly would instead be directly elected at a later date.[4]
Despite threats of a boycott, a majority of Libyans (61.58%)[6] cast a ballot. However, the election was marred by violence, protests and a number of deaths.[7][8]
Electoral system
A draft election law was published on 1 January 2012 on the website of the High National Election Commission (HNEC), after which public comments were accepted. The draft law proposed electing 200 representatives, of which at least 10% should be women, unless fewer than 10% of candidates were women. Members of the NTC and Jamahiriya government members, including relatives of Muammar Gaddafi, were barred from running.[9][10]
The second draft abolished the women's quota and allowed local NTC council members to run in the election; it also changed the electoral system from countrywide to constituency​-based.​[11] Following further protests against restrictions for dual nationals and other issues, the release of the electoral law was again postponed to 28 January 2012.[12] The NTC also sought the input of the Libyan Women's Platform for Peace, who had proposed an alternative electoral law and criticized the official draft on four key points relating to dual nationals, lack of a women's quota, inadequate countermeasures against corruption and the risk of incentivizing tribal party formation.[13][third-party source needed]
A new electoral law was finally drafted on 28–29 January 2012. The election system will be a form of parallel voting, with 64 constituency seats (with independent candidates only) and 136 list seats for party lists. Lists will have to alternate between male and female candidates, in effect ensuring a women's quota. The age required to stand for election was lowered to 21 years, and citizens with dual nationality will be allowed to vote and run in the election.[14][15] Further changes were later made, changing the ratio to 120 constituency seats and 80 list seats, reportedly in an attempt to reduce the Muslim Brotherhood's influence in the new parliament.[16] The 120 constituency seats would be elected from 69 constituencies, whilst the 80 list seats would be elected in 20 constituencies.[17]
Voter registration
Registration of voters, parties participating in elections and independent candidates started at 1 May, and was due to finish on 14 May. However, following a call for a boycott of the process by the Council of Cyrenaica, which is seeking autonomy for parts of eastern Libya around the city of Benghazi, the deadline was extended until 21 May.[18] In total 2,865,937 voters, or 80% of the estimated 3 million to 3.5 million electorate, registered for the elections.[5] The registration process was supervised by the United Nations Support Mission in Libya.[19]
Minority groups, such as the Tawerghans, who had been accused of supporting former leader Muammar Gaddafi, said that the election was futile as they are marginalised. They also added that voter registration was difficult.[20] Yet about 90 percent of Tawerghans living in Janzour Naval Academy refugee camp registered to vote.[21]
A total of 374 party lists registered to contest the 80 party list seats, together with 2,639 candidates for the 120 constituency seats.[17] The four parties that were expected to dominate the election are the National Front Party, the Justice and Construction Party, the National or Homeland Party and the National Forces Alliance. The National Front Party is linked to the National Front for the Salvation of Libya (NFSL), a former anti-Gaddafi resistance group formed in the 1980s. It is led by Mohamed el-Magariaf, an intellectual based in Eastern Libya. The Justice and Construction Party is the political arm of the Muslim Brotherhood in Libya. The Homeland Party is an Islamist party as well, led by the Islamic cleric Ali al-Sallabi and Abdelhakim Belhadj, the former emir of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG). The National Forces Alliance is a liberal umbrella coalition around ex-interim prime minister Mahmoud Jibril, who himself did not run for a seat in the GNC.[22][23]
The Libyan Popular National Movement, a political party supporting the policies of Gaddafi, was banned from participating in the elections.[citation needed]
Voting was disrupted in some parts of the country, with 6% of the 6,629 polling stations unable to open normally.[5][24] However all but eight polling stations managed to open up for voters during the day and the remaining eight, including two in the Kufra area, which had seen clashes between Toubous and government forces, opened the following day.[25] In the Benghazi area a polling station was attacked by activists seeking autonomy for the east of the country and an election official was killed by a gun attack on a helicopter carrying voting materials on the day before the election.[5] In eastern Libya former rebels closed five oil terminals at Brega, Ra's Lanuf and Sidra for 48 hours in an attempt to disrupt the elections.[5][26] In Ajdabiya a pro-federalism protester was shot dead by locals when he tried to steal a ballot box from a polling station.[27] Officials with the HNEC were denied access to Bani Walid by tribal Gaddafi loyalists who control the city, and could not monitor the voting process.[28]
Around 1.7 million of 2.8 million registered voters participated in the elections.[25]
See also: List of members elected to the General National Congress, 2012
According to first counts, the liberal National Forces Alliance did well in the northern areas except Misrata, whereas the race was more even in the south. The other key contenders were the Islamic Justice and Construction Party, which came in second, and Al-Watan, which in the end won no seats at all.[29]
On 17 July, the High National Election Commission announced provisional results. In the 80 proportional seats, Mahmoud Jibril's National Forces Alliance (NFA) received 48.1%, winning 39 seats. This was followed by the Justice and Construction Party (JCP), which received 10.3% and 17 seats and third was the National Front Party with 4.1% and three seats. The Union for the Homeland and the National Centrist Party also took two seats, as did the Wadi Al-Hayah Party for Democracy and Development. Fifteen other parties won one party list seat each.[30][31]
The affiliation of the 120 independents is obscure but the election for Prime Minister gave some indication: in the first round Mahmoud Jibril (NFA) got 86 votes, Mustafa Abushagur (independent) got 55 votes and Awad Barasi (JCP) got 41 votes.[32] Then Abushagur defeated Jibril with 96 to 94. It is estimated that 25 independents are associated with the NFA, 17 with Justice and Construction, and 23 are Salafis.[33]
National Forces Alliance714,76948.1439039
Justice and Construction Party152,44110.2717017
National Front60,5924.08303
Union for Homeland66,7724.50202
National Centrist Party59,4174.00202
Wadi Al-Hayah Party6,9470.47202
Moderate Ummah Assembly21,8251.47101
Authenticity and Renewal18,7451.26101
National Party For Development and Welfare17,1581.16101
Al-Hekma (Wisdom) Party17,1291.15101
Authenticity and Progress13,6790.92101
Libyan National Democratic Party13,0920.88101
National Parties Alliance12,7350.86101
Ar-Resalah (The Message)7,8600.53101
Centrist Youth Party7,3190.49101
Libya Al-'Amal (Libya – The Hope)6,0930.41101
Labaika National Party3,4720.23101
Libyan Party for Liberty and Development2,6910.18101
Arrakeeza (The Foundation)1,5250.10101
Nation and Prosperity1,4000.09101
National Party of Wadi ash-Shati'1,3550.09101
Homeland Party51,2923.45000
Other parties218,56214.72000
Invalid/blank votes280,117
Registered voters/turnout2,865,93761.58
Sources: Libya Herald, POMED, HNEC
  1. ^ "Q&A: Libya's General National Congress election", BBC News, 7 July 2012, archived from the original on 5 July 2012, retrieved 20 June 2018
  2. ^ Libya elections postponed to July 7Archived 20 October 2013 at the Wayback Machine Gulf News, 11 June 2012
  3. ^ "Libya: Transitional authorities to hold election 19 June", AfriqueJet, 28 April 2012, archived from the original on 7 May 2012, retrieved 1 May 2012
  4. ^ a b c Gumuchian, Marie-Louise, and Hadeel Al Shalchi. "Libyans celebrate free vote despite violence". Reuters. Archived from the original on 9 July 2012. Retrieved 8 July 2012.
  5. ^ a b c d e Libya election: Historic vote amid tensions Archived 24 October 2017 at the Wayback Machine, BBC News, 7 July 2012
  6. ^ "National Congress party results -". www.libyaherald.com. Archived from the original on 23 May 2019. Retrieved 20 July 2014.
  7. ^ "Boycott calls and unrest raise fear of violence on eve of Libya's first election". 6 July 2012. Archived from the original on 25 July 2014. Retrieved 18 July 2014.
  8. ^ "Libyan militia storm election office in Benghazi as violence spreads". The Guardian. Associated Press. 1 July 2012. Archived from the original on 10 May 2017. Retrieved 12 December 2016.
  9. ^ "Libya citizens linked to Muammar Gaddafi can't run in election: draft bill". 2 January 2012. Archived from the original on 22 January 2013. Retrieved 20 July 2014.
  10. ^ "Mahmoud Jibril: From Libya's spokesman to its kingmaker". Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 3 September 2017 – via The Globe and Mail.
  11. ^ Holmes, Oliver (20 January 2012), Libya drops election quota for women, Reuters
  12. ^ Libya postpones adopting election law, News24.com, 22 January 2012, archived from the original on 23 January 2012, retrieved 24 January 2012
  13. ^ News Flash: NTC Considering Draft Electoral Law Proposed by Libyan Women’s Platform for Peace, Shabab Libya, 25 January 2012, archived from the original on 26 June 2013, retrieved 25 January 2012
  14. ^ Lamloum, Imed (28 January 2012), Libya's NTC adopts election law, drops women quota, AFP, archived from the original on 29 January 2012, retrieved 11 November 2016
  15. ^ Mo Hong'e (29 January 2012), Libya's NTC announces new electoral law, Xinhua, archived from the original on 6 March 2012, retrieved 30 January 2012
  16. ^ Eljarh, Mohamed (1 February 2012), "The Libyan Elections Law 2012 and the Muslim Brotherhood", Middle East Online, archived from the original on 9 November 2013, retrieved 1 February 2012
  17. ^ a b "Libya elections: Do any of the parties have a plan?". BBC News. 6 July 2012. Archived from the original on 25 August 2012. Retrieved 6 September 2012.
  18. ^ Libya extends voter registration amid boycott call Archived 11 April 2016 at the Wayback Machine Daily Star (Lebanon), 13 May 2012
  19. ^ Final registration count at more than 2.7 million voters Libya Herald, 23 May 2012
  20. ^ Tawerghans cast doubt over Libya electionArchived 6 June 2017 at the Wayback Machine Al Jazeera, 3 June 2012
  21. ^ The election at the Tawergha camp in the Janzour Naval Academy, Libya Herald
  22. ^ Coker, Margaret (22 June 2012), "Libya Election Panel Battles Ghosts", The Wall Street Journal, archived from the original on 25 September 2017, retrieved 8 August 2017
  23. ^ Khan, Umar (5 June 2012), "Libya's delayed elections are hard to call", The Guardian, archived from the original on 24 December 2013, retrieved 2 July 2012
  24. ^ Daily statistics from 1 to 21 May 2012Archived 4 June 2012 at the Wayback Machine, High National Election Commission.
  25. ^ a b Election: 1.7 million Libyans voted; polling continues in 8 centres today Archived 22 August 2019 at the Wayback Machine, Libya Herald, 8 July 2012
  26. ^ Protests and tears of joy mark free Libyan pollArchived 4 March 2016 at the Wayback Machine, Reuters
  27. ^ Libyan anti-poll protester shot dead in clashArchived 3 March 2016 at the Wayback Machine, Reuters
  28. ^ Libyans vote in first election in more than 40 years Archived 22 July 2012 at the Wayback Machine Truth Out
  29. ^ Soguel, Dominique (8 July 2012), Jibril urges unity as Libya wraps up vote count, AFP, archived from the original on 15 August 2012, retrieved 11 November 2016
  30. ^ National Forces Alliance sweeps party lists as election results finally announced, Libya Herald, 17 July 2012.
  31. ^ National Congress Party Results, Libya Herald, 18 July 2012.
  32. ^ "Abushagur elected as Prime Minister -". www.libyaherald.com. Archived from the original on 13 December 2013. Retrieved 4 November 2012.
  33. ^ "Research paper" (PDF). www.swp-berlin.org. Archived (PDF) from the original on 4 September 2018. Retrieved 19 May 2013.
External links
High National Election Commission
Last edited on 17 March 2021, at 17:33
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