By: Hesham Bin-Ghalbon*
My comment on the article of Dr. Mohamed Mufti:
Dr, Mohamed Mufti has written an article that I would like to comment on a part of it. He mentioned that Mr. Mohamed Bin-Ghalbon, the chief of Libyan Constitutional Union, called for
monarchy rule; since king Idris passed away.
Bin-Ghalbon has never called for a certain type of rule, hasn’t suggested or supported anyone for ruling Libya or for any other post. Such thing is solely decided by the Libyan people in a public internationally-supervised referendum (according to the foundation statement of the Libyan Constitutional Union of October 7th, 1981).
Mr. Bin-Ghalbon only called for re-adopting the legitimacy of independence constitution to confront the illegitimate coup. When the king was alive, calling for such duty was, in addition to other clear reasons, a constitutional, lawful, and moral duty to restore things back in the way they were in the night of August 31st, 1969 before the country was hijacked.
After the king’s death, the Constitutional Union in its obituary to the king, called for founding preliminary national assembly on 15 May 1983, it then discussed details of the assembly in a statement in August 9th, 1984. Its translation was published as a paid-advertisement in the Guardian newspaper on 5 October 1984.
After the revolution erupted, Bin-Ghalbon called for the immediate reactivation of the constitution to retain discipline, avoid inevitable political vacuum, and to postpone discussions about sensitive matters including religion and minorities’ rights.
For documentation (as our people say “words aren’t wasted on you”, Dr. Mufti) that is literally what came in the conclusion of the founding statement of the Constitutional Union on the its archive website; “the Libyan Constitutional Union emphasized the right of the Libyan people to restore justice and thereafter to decide such form of body politic and system of government as they may choose of their own free will in a referendum to be conducted under international supervision within a reasonable period following the restoration of constitutional legality to the nation”.
This is a side of duties of the National Association as mentioned in the founding statement: “When this regime has been abolished, and the “national assembly re-formed to admit new members from inside Libya. the assembly will then become empowered to oversee a caretaker administration in the merino period leading to a national plebiscite for the people to determine”.
This is the Union’s reason for holding on constitution after the revolution on 28 July 2011: The constitution is “the national document that gave birth to the Libyan State, which gives it more value than any ruler-whatever his title is- and makes it the superior reference”; it adds “these are the properties of our constitution, provided by sincere ancestors, and we shouldn’t let it go, especially in such stage in Libya’s journey to the future with the spirit of February 17th revolution, in which we need all what can gather rather than divide and reduce preoccupation with sensitive cases (minorities rights, religion, etc.) that have been ruled enough to guarantee rights of all and please all parties with no need for more discussions”.
Another important characteristic is that “the Libyan constitution (1951) is owned by all Libyans with no favor from any group or party that may make the constitution unacceptable by citizens as it is the base that a selection of experts is working on, to fit it to the demands of current age and aspirations of citizens”.
I want to mention Faraj Abolesha’s true interpretation to Mohamed Bin-Ghalbon’s call, which he summarized in an article published on Libyan websites on 4 June 2010, entitled “what do Libya need monarchy for?”. He said “those who call for the monarchy back, use modern examples like in Spain. Those are present in a political side within Libyan opposition. But they aren’t in a known body. That is if we exclude “the Constitutional Union” as it limited its goal in restoring constitution and limited its allegiance to monarchy to king Mohamed Idris El-senussi”.
Dr. Mufti, accept my respect and appreciation.
*The spokesman of Libyan Constitutional Union