On Sunday 5th May 2013, the General National Congress (GNC) of Libya approved Law No. 13 of 2013, "The Political and Administrative Isolation Law", which precludes officials of the former Gaddafi regime from holding a position in the new government or parliament, as well as positions of leadership in various other institutions including the judiciary, universities, the military and the media. The law comes into force 30 days from its passing.
The law creates a committee whose role is similar to the current integrity commission, whereby individuals can be referred to the new committee if they are suspected to fall within the listed criteria of banned persons, listed in article 1 of the law.
The legislation comes amidst the backdrop of the siege of several ministries by various militia brigades, who demanded that the bill be passed by the GNC. Following its unanimous approval, several militia have returned to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Justice to resume the blockade, this time demanding the removal of Prime Minister Ali Zeidan, who is likely to be unaffected by the law. On the 7th May 2013, the Libyan defence minister, Mohamed Barghati, resigned over the role that militia had played in its enactment, citing it as an "attack on democracy". He was later persuaded by Zeidan to remain in office.
Ministries that will experience changes as a result of the political and administrative isolation law may be affected by a slowdown in activity during the changeover process. Any dealings with the relevant ministries may be delayed. Senior positions in ministries, authorities and government companies are already experiencing a high turnover rate post-revolution, and this law may mean this trend is set to continue. Aside from some high profile cases in government and in the GNC, it will remain to be seen exactly who, and how many people, will be subject to this law.
As can only be expected, Libya is continuing to face challenges during this period of transition, but there is a growing tangible confidence that can be felt on the ground, and a belief that Libya will find a way through these challenges to enter a period of growth that should benefit the country and international investors.