The head of one of Libya’s main political movements has alleged widespread fraud involving national identity cards, saying this could jeopardize elections that may be held late this year. Mahmoud Jibril, a former interim leader of the country, called for a thorough investigation into the abuses which could also have led to hundreds of thousands of fraudulent claims for welfare payments. The United Nations and rival Libyan factions say they hope presidential and parliamentary elections can be held on Dec. 10 in a step toward reunifying and stabilizing Libya, which has been in turmoil since a NATO-backed revolt toppled Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.
But Jibril, who leads the National Forces Alliance (NFA) coalition, told Reuters that ID card fraud would provide a reason for any losing party to challenge the result.
“Unfortunately this problem is not fixed yet and if we go to elections based on those fake ID numbers and fake voters, that means the results of the coming elections will not be transparent,” he said.
A commitment by Libyan factions in May to hold the elections in December already faced numerous obstacles, including the lack of a legal framework and conflict in parts of the country.