NFA Set For Victory as Libya Takes Another Step Towards Democracy
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NFA Set For Victory as Libya Takes Another Step Towards Democracy

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Provisional final election results after last Saturday's election for Libya's National Congress that will be tasked with overseeing the drafting of a new constitution and picking an interim prime minister and Cabinet are expected Saturday, while a certified result is bound to be announced next week.However, particularly when it comes to the parties, it is now a forgone conclusion that the centrist National Forces Alliance, NFA, has taken the lion’s share of the 80 seats reserved for parties in the 200-seat National Congress.

The NFA, a coalition of about 60 parties led by Mahmoud Jibril, who served as a planning minister to Muammar Gaddafi but broke immediately with the regime when the rebellion started, is best placed for success and seems to have attained a landslide victory, while the Muslim Brotherhood's Justice and Construction Party who had not expected defeat amid a trend of Muslim Brotherhood success in neighbouring countries, faces defeat.

However, it is also a known fact that the political leanings of the winners of the other 120 seats reserved for individual candidates will be unclear for days, if not weeks. All parties packed the individual candidate lists, and the Muslim Brotherhood’s with the Justice and Construction Party, JCP, still hoping that it has managed to lure most of the candidates as it was more adept than others.

But again, the signs are, that candidates with more local focus than national political affiliations have won the bulk of the seats.

With almost 98 per cent of the votes counted by Friday, the NFA has reportedly won 16 of the 20 constituencies reserved for the party lists, with the Justice and Construction Party gaining just one.

The overall results have turned out to be on the mark after earlier projections soon after the end of voting had put the NFA well in the lead.

In the eastern part of the capital, Tripoli, that include Tajoura, Garabouli, and Souq al Jumaa, the NFA gained over 70,000 votes. The Originality and Renewal Party got just over 15,000, and the JCP over 12,000.

In central Tripoli, the NFA managed over 43,000 votes against the JCP's 4,000.

Such figures follow on the lines of the July 11 victory in the eastern city of Benghazi, Libya's second largest, and capital of the rich easter province of Cyrenaica where NFA managed a sound majority with over 95,000 votes as against the JCP's 16,000.

The NFA however did poorly in Libya's third largest city, Misurata where it only received 6,561 votes compared to the Union for the Homeland's 20,696, and the JCP's 17,165. The National Front Party got 11,537.

The NFA did well in Janzour, 15kms from Tripoli, and in the cities of Zliten and Tarhouna, but failed to do as well in Ubari where it only managed fourth place with only 2,071 votes. Most votes, with over 6,000 went to the local party.

The number of political entities that seem to have gained any votes in all the constituencies range from between 30 to 49.

Meanwhile, after early reports that the JCP would be prepared to accept Jibril's call for a unity government, Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohammed Sawan now appears to be rejecting the idea of a deal with Jibril, and in an interview he branded Mahmoud Jibril as a former ally of ousted dictator Muammar Gaddafi, and of being the electoral choice of old Gaddafi loyalists.

Jibril and his allies is now expected to seek to shape a working majority in the National Congress. But it will depend on the ability of political parties. The aim would be to combine the party seats with the other 120 to be occupied by the individual candidates.

Those who have also been strongly defeated in these elections are the small groups that had been calling fro federalism in Eastern Libya and caused a lot of noise in the media during the last few months specifically when they also called for the boycott of the elections. The electorate has however not heeded the call and almost whole-heartedly participated in the historic election.

Forming a government is not going to be that easy. The Libyan people demand transparency and accountability on the part of the elected members of the new government that will be leading Libya for the next 18 months.

(The Tripoli post)