Libya Eyes Presidential Runoff in February, Official Says
(Bloomberg) -- Libya expects to hold a presidential runoff vote around the middle of February, the head of the country’s election commission said Tuesday.
The second round is to take place 52 days after the first, which is scheduled for Dec. 24, Emad al-Saeh said in a televised press conference. Al-Saeh said a total of 98 candidates had registered for the vote, although a final list in expected on Dec. 7 after the names have been signed off as being eligible to run.
Under election rules, a runoff vote would be held if no one candidate secures more than 50% of the ballots.
Among those who have registered for the presidential ballot are Saif al-Islam Al Qaddafi, a son of the ousted Libyan strongman, eastern military commander Khalifa Haftar and the current prime minister, Abdul Hamid Dbeibah.
Al Qaddafi is wanted by the International Criminal Court for alleged crimes against humanity during the 2011 uprising that led to his father’s ouster and killing. Haftar holds dual U.S.-Libyan nationality, a status that could impede his bid. Current election law requires officeholders to step down three months ahead of the vote, which could also pose a problem for Dbeibah’s candidacy.
The December vote is seen as a landmark event in Libya -- ushering in what official there bill as a new era of democracy in a nation roiled by conflict for much of the past decade.
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