25 January 2012 – Members of the legal team who drafted the alternative electoral law proposed by the Libyan Women’s Platform for Peace (LWPP) are in negotiations with members of the National Transitional Council (NTC) today to resolve disagreements over the Libyan electoral law.
“Our legal team has emerged from discussions with NTC representatives aimed at ensuring the full participation of women in Libya’s public life, “ said Dr. Salah El-Merghani, a member of the legal team supporting the alternative electoral law. “We have had productive negotiations with members of the NTC, but it is clear that Mustafa Abdel Jalil remains the ultimate decision maker in these matters.”
Negotiations are currently centering on three key areas:
Electoral Representation of Women: The LWPP is proposing a modified “zipper list” system which will ensure the representation of 67 women within the 200-member body of the National Congress which will be tasked with drafting Libya’s New Constitution. Under this proposal 136 seats in the National Congress will be allocated to party lists, with alternating male and female candidate.
Inclusion of Dual Nationals: The LWPP is advocating for a removal of reference to Article 24 of 2012 (the Nationality Law) which could be interpreted to restrict the ability of dual nationals to serve as members of the National Congress.
Political Parties: The LWPP is advocating for measures that would not unduly restrict the formation and participation of parties in Libya’s political life within the list system.
After the NTC released its draft electoral law in January 2012, the LWPP joined many civil society groups across Libya to criticize four key areas. These were: 1) the lack of adequate provisions for women’s political participation, 2) possible interpretations that would exclude dual citizens from public life, 3) the risk of incentivizing political party formation along tribal lines, and 4) inadequate mechanisms to fight corruption in the electoral process.
The draft law was drafted by a group of elite Libyan legal experts including Dr. Kuni Abouda, Salah El-Merghani, Hadi Buhamra, and Ali Dou.