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Budget is inflated by new exchange rate, government supports elections and illegal migration will be reduced: Official government Spokesperson

Mohamed Hamuda the Official Spokesperson for the Libyan Government said the reason why the 2021 budget seemed so large was because it was calculated on the new dinar-dollar exchange rate. Hamuda was engaging in a live question-and-answer session yesterday with the general public through the government’s Hakomitna (Our Government) Facebook page.

The 2021 budget

He said the proposed budget is lower than all previous budgets except for 2020, and it includes important projects to stabilize services, move the wheel of the economy, and pay some foreign debts for health treatment and study abroad.

Hamuda said the government needs Parliament to approve increases in the education, interior and other sectors to be included in the budget, otherwise the matter will remain mere slogans

He said state sector salaries will return to their levels prior to the 20 percent decrease imposed by the outgoing government. The increase will start from the salaries of the month of May.

Hamuda also explained that the reunification of the salary system between western and eastern Libya led to the modification and addition of one million jobs, including 600,000 employees in the outgoing eastern-based interim government.

Vaccines and health spending

The Official government Spokesperson said Libya had imported just under half a million doses of anti-Coronavirus vaccines and that 350,000 of those targeted were vaccinated

He revealed that credit of LD 1.8 billion has been opened to supply medicines for cancer, kidneys and chronic diseases and that next week enough scorpion sting vaccines will arrive for a year.

Projects

He said there are electricity projects that are currently being completed, most notably the first unit at the Ubari station, which will provide 160 megawatts of power.

After the budget is approved, work will be carried out on other projects, including the Mellitah station and other power stations.

Elections are mainly the responsibility of the legislature

On the holding of the 24 December elections, Hamuda said the government has not and will not oppose the holding of elections. He pointed out that the government does not bear the bulk of the responsibility for the holding of elections, but rather the legislature: parliament.

He said the government’s role is to provide a secure environment and to hold elections in an atmosphere of transparency, freedom and integrity.

Cabinet meeting to be held in Benghazi soon

Hamuda attributed the postponement of the Cabinet’s visit headed by Prime Minister Abd Alhamid Aldabaiba to Benghazi to “some tensions and misunderstood statements”. He stressed that the government intends to visit Benghazi ‘‘very soon’’ and hold a cabinet meeting there.

Border security

He said the border security file is very important and it has been discussed with a number of foreign countries as it is an issue that the government is focusing on. He said the borders will be secured and the phenomenon of illegal immigration will be reduced, with technical facilities from other countries. The issue is not solely a Libyan issue, he stressed.

Libya’s south has been marginalized for years

He pointed out that Libya’s south needs special attention and care because for years it was marginalised and without good services. He pointed to the government’s efforts to solve the fuel crises in the south by sending fuel convoys which he said would continue during the coming periods.

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