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Constitution of Libya – 3: Form of State Governance during the Transitional Stage

Part Three
Form of State Governance during the Transitional Stage

Article 17
The Interim Transitional National Council is the supreme power in the State of Libya and shall undertake the works of the supreme sovereignty including legislation and laying down the general policy of the State. The Transitional National Council shall be deemed as the sole legitimate representative of the Libyan people and it shall derive its legitimacy from the Revolution of February 17th. The Transitional National Council shall be entrusted to guarantee the national unity, the safety of the national territory, to embody and circulate values and morals, to ensure the safety of citizens and expatriates, to ratify the international agreements and to establish the bases of the civil constitutional democratic state.

Article 18
• The Interim Transitional National Council shall consist of representatives for the Local Councils. It must be taken into consideration in determining the representatives of each Local Council the population density and the geographical standard of the city or the area which it represents. The Council shall have the right to add ten (10) members for the sake of national interest. The Council shall nominate and elect those members.

• The Interim Transitional National Council shall elect a president, first and second vices thereof. If the post of the President or of his vice becomes vacant, a successor shall be elected by the Council. In all cases, election shall be effected by relative majority of those present. In case more than one nominee equaled in obtaining the majority votes, the member who is given a casting vote by the President shall be elected.

Article 19
The President of the Interim Transitional National Council shall take oath before the Council and the members of the Interim Transitional National Council shall take oath in the following formula :
“I swear by Almighty God to carry out the duties of my job honestly and truthfully, to remain faithful to the goals and principles of the Interim Transitional National Council in Libya, to respect the constitutional charter and internal statutes thereof, to look after the interests of the Libyan people in full and to safeguard the independence, security and unity and territorial integrity of the motherland.”

Article 20
The Interim Transitional National Council shall have its own statutes which shall regulate the method of work therein and the manner to exercise the duties and functions thereof.

Article 21
It shall be impermissible for any member of the Interim Transitional National Council to assume any executive public office. It shall also be impermissible to combine the membership of the National Council with the membership of the Local Council. A member may neither be appointed in a Board of Directors of any company nor may he contribute to obligations made by the government or made by one of the public institutions. Further, during the term of his membership, the member, his wife or his sons may not buy or rent any State property or lease or sell to or barter with the State any of his own property, or conclude a contract with the Sate in his capacity as obligator, supplier or contractor.

Article 22
No membership in the National Council shall be revoked except on the grounds of loss of one of the conditions of membership or the violation of his obligations as a member. The membership shall be deemed invalid on the grounds of a decision taken by two-thirds of the Interim Transitional National Council members. The membership shall end in cases of death, acceptance of resignation by the Interim Transitional National Council, losing of legal competence or disability to perform duty. In case of revoking or expiration of the membership, the National Council shall elect the new member in replacement of the member whose membership was revoked or expired.

Article 23
The seat of the Interim Transitional National Council shall be in the city of Tripoli and it may establish an interim seat in the city of Benghazi. However, the Council may, meet in another place upon the request of the majority of its members.

Article 24
• The Transitional National Council shall appoint an Executive Office or an Interim Government consisting of a Chairman and sufficient number of members in order to manage the different sectors of the State. The Interim Transitional National Council shall have the right to dismiss the Chairman of the Executive Office or the Interim Government or any member thereof provided that such resolution shall be issued and adopted by the majority of two thirds of the members of the Council.

• The Chairman of the Executive Office or the Interim Government and the members thereof shall be jointly liable before the Interim Transitional National Council for carrying out the general policy of the State in accordance with the instructions and directions of Interim Transitional National Council. Each and every member shall further be responsible for the works of the sector presided by him before the Executive Office or the Interim Government.

Article 25
The Chairman of the Executive Office or the Interim Government shall take oath in the formula prescribed by Article (19) prior to carrying on their duties before the President of the Interim Transitional National Council.

Article 26
The Executive Office or the Interim Government shall carry out the general policy of the State in accordance with the instructions and directions of the Interim Transitional National Council. The Executive Office or the Interim Government shall as well undertake the issuance of the executive regulations of the issued laws. The Executive Office or the Interim Government shall also submit the draft laws to the Interim National Council in order to review same and to take as it may deem appropriate in respect thereof.

Article 27
The general budget of the State shall be issued by law.

Article 28
The Interim Transitional National Council shall establish an Accounting Department which shall undertake financial control over all revenues, expenses, all movable and immovable property belonging to the State. The said department shall verify the optimum use of such funds and preserve same. It shall also submit an annual report on that to the Interim National Council, the Executive Office or the Interim Government.

Article 29
The Interim Transitional National Council shall appoint diplomatic representatives of the State abroad upon the nomination of the Executive Office. It shall also have the right to remove them or to accept their resignations. It shall further accept the credentials of the heads of foreign diplomatic missions. The Council shall as well delegate its President in accepting the credentials of the heads of foreign diplomatic missions.

Article 30
• Prior to liberation, the Interim Transitional National Council shall be completed as approved by the Council. It shall remain the Council which represents the supreme authority in the State of Libya; it shall be liable for managing the State until the National Public Conference is elected.

• After the announcement of liberation, the Interim Transitional National Council shall move to its headquarters in Tripoli. The Interim Transitional National Council shall form an interim government within a period not exceeding thirty days and within a a period not later than ninety days from the date liberation is announced and made known, the Council shall:

  1. Promulgate a law on electing the National Public Conference.
  2. Appoint the National Supreme Commission for elections.
  3. Invite for the election of the National Public Conference.

• The National Public Conference shall be elected within a period of two hundred forty
days from the date liberation is announced and made known.

• The National Public Conference shall consist of two hundred elected members from amongst all the sons of the Libyan People in accordance with the law of electing the National Public Conference.

• The Interim Transitional National Council shall be dissolved upon holding the first meeting of the National Public Conference. The oldest members shall undertake the chairmanship of the meeting. The youngest member shall assume the position of the secretary of the meeting. During such meeting, the President of the National Public Conference and his Vice shall be elected by direct, secret balloting by relative majority. The Provisional Government shall continue carrying on its works until an interim government is formed.

• The National Public Conference shall, within a period not later than thirty days as of the date thereof, shall:

  1.  Appoint ministers and shall propose the names of the members of its government provided that all such members shall have the confidence of the National Public Conference prior to carrying on their works as an Interim Government. The National Public Conference shall further appoint the presidents of the sovereign posts.
  2. Opt for a Constitutional Power in order to formulate the constitution draft for the State which Power shall be called “the Constitutional Power for Formulating the Constitution” provided that such Power shall finish submitting the constitution draft to the Conference within a period not exceeding sixty (60) days from the date of holding its first meeting.

• The constitution draft shall be approved by the National Public Conference and shall be referred to the people for a plebiscite with (Yes) or (No) within thirty days from the date of the approval thereof by the Conference. If and when the Libyan people approve the Constitution by two thirds of the majority of the voters, the Constitutional Power shall then approve the constitution draft as being the Constitution for the State. The National Public Conference shall also approve the same. In case of disapproval of the Libyan people, the Constitutional Power shall then be assigned to reformulate the constitution draft and the constitution draft shall be re-referred to the people for a plebiscite within a period not exceeding thirty days.

• The National Public Conference shall issue the Law of public elections in accordance with the Constitution within thirty days.

• The public elections shall be conducted within a period of one hundred eighty days from the date the laws regulating the same are promulgated. Both the National Public Conference and the interim government shall oversee the preparation of all the requirements of conducting the election process in a democratic and transparent manner.

• The National supreme Commission for Elections, which shall be reformed by the National Public Conference, shall conduct the public elections under the supervision of the National Judicial authority, the United Nations and the international and regional organizations.

• The National Public Conference shall ratify and announce the results of the elections, and shall convoke the Legislative Authority for meeting within a period not exceeding thirty days. In the first session thereof, the National Public Conference shall be dissolved and the Legislative Power shall fulfill its legislative tasks.

• By holding the first session of the Legislative Power, the Interim Government shall be deemed and taken as a caretaker government for conducting business until a permanent government is approved in accordance with the Constitution.

Next: Chapter 4 – Judicial Guarantees

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