By Ebi Kesiena
With only few days to go until scheduled elections meant to cap Libya’s long political transition and unify the war-torn country, many instead fear a return to violence.
Standing near the port in the capital Tripoli, Khaled al-Turki said he has little optimism about the December 24 vote.
“The most prominent candidates are divisive,” the 25-year-old told AFP.
“If there had been a candidate with broad public approval, competent and able to bring the Libyan people together, we would have been more optimistic. But that’s not the case,” he added.
Since long-time ruler Muammar Gaddafi was toppled and killed in a 2011 revolt, the North African country has endured a decade of war, leaving bitter divisions and impoverishing the population, despite Libya’s oil wealth.
But before any government can fix the dire economic situation, it will need to bring security, said Adam Bin Fayed, who works with Turki at an international organisation in Tripoli.
“I hope that problems like electricity cuts, the lack of cash and (damaged) infrastructure can be sorted out,” Bin Fayed said.
“But the priority has to be secure because you can’t build anything, until security is in place.”
Like Turki, he is concerned over the lack of a unifying candidate.
“To build security, the president needs to be able to speak to all Libyans,” he said.