Afran : Friend of Gaddafi named to head Libyan parliament
on 2010/1/27 17:23:52

SIRTE, Libya (Reuters) - A close friend of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi who helped steer the OPEC member out of diplomatic isolation became head of the country's top legislative body on Tuesday.

Mohamed Abdul Quasim al-Zwai, who was Libya's first envoy to Britain after the two countries renewed diplomatic relations in 1999, replaced Moubarek Abdallah al Shamekh as secretary of the secretariat of the General People's Congress (GPC) after a vote.

The GPC names the government and is the top consultative body in Gaddafi's system of grass-roots government in which political parties are banned.

The secretariat, which was cut to seven members from 12 this week to streamline decision making, coordinates the GPC's agenda and deliberations.

Experts on Libya say that, in practice, no GPC resolutions can be passed without the leader's approval.

Zwai was a school classmate of Gaddafi and joined him in overthrowing the north African country's ailing King Idriss in 1969.

In 2001 he became Libya's first ambassador to Britain in 17 years and worked closely with Gaddafi's reformist son Saif al-Islam to convince the British and U.S. governments that Libya wanted to scrap banned weapons programmes and end its isolation.

Inside Libya, Zwai is viewed as a technocrat and relative moderate. "He's seen as a pragmatist," said one Western former diplomat on condition of anonymity. "He has a good reputation and great influence, with lots of ministerial background."

Libya watchers say Gaddafi prefers to keep his vision for the country vague and they monitor top appointments closely for clues to where the government is headed.

Local media reported in October that Saif al-Islam had been named coordinator of a group of tribal, political and business leaders, making him Libya's second most powerful figure, but analysts say he is competing for influence with a conservative old guard.

Previous article - Next article Printer Friendly Page Send this Story to a Friend Create a PDF from the article

Other articles
2022/11/28 11:28:24 - A China-Pakistan jet used by Nigeria may soon be the most widely operated combat aircraft
2022/11/28 11:03:45 - 2023 - Only 10% of Candidates in Nigeria Are Women
2022/11/28 10:52:42 - ‘We stand with democracy’ — Nigeria reacts as Sao Tome and Principe foils coup attempt
2022/11/28 10:09:31 - Nigeria’s industrial sector has shrunk to lowest value in 7 years
2022/11/27 12:53:39 - Suluhu Reveals Blunder That Nearly Sparked Tiff Between Tanzania & Kenya
2022/11/27 10:58:51 - South Africa’s army is in trouble
2022/11/20 11:40:00 - TotalEnergies Looks To Explore For Oil And Gas In West South Africa
2022/11/20 11:28:23 - Ethiopia starts selling power to Kenya, eyes $100m annual returns
2022/11/20 10:40:00 - Nigerian Army Arrests Eight Joint Task Force Members For Supplying Logistics To Boko Haram
2022/11/15 12:31:16 - Nigerian students in US hit 14,438
2022/11/15 11:46:39 - Energy transition creating huge opportunities in Nigeria’
2022/11/15 11:34:23 - US Govt Announces $50m Technical Assistance for Nigeria’s 2023 Polls
2022/11/15 11:30:00 - Oil Production: Again, OPEC Data Shows Angola, Algeria, Libya Overtook Nigeria in October
2022/11/15 10:49:38 - Inside Uhuru Kenyatta's Trip in DRC, to Meet Rebels
2022/11/15 10:46:36 - US Embassy Offers Ksh 1.2B Reward for Al-Shabaab Leaders
2022/11/15 10:40:45 - Kenya's smart city woos Chinese investors to boost technology sector
2022/11/12 12:55:12 - Court rejects Nigeria’s $1.1bn damages request against Eni, Shell
2022/11/12 12:40:12 - Nigerian Government Files Seven Amended Charges Against IPOB Leader, Nnamdi Kanu, As Court Sits On Monday
2022/11/12 11:18:35 - Kenya in talks for World Bank support loan

The comments are owned by the author. We aren't responsible for their content.