Representatives from nine Southern Libyan municipal councils recently elected gather in Tripoli. Photo: © UNDP Libya/ Ahmed Bhih

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) gathered representatives from nine Southern municipal councils recently elected to discuss approaches aimed at increasing citizens participations, improving inclusive representation and identifying priorities and needs within their municipalities.

Brak Shati, Edri Shati, Gerda Shati, Shweref, Ghrefa, Buwaness, Bent Baya, Wadi Etba and Ubari, were the Municipalities participating in the event together with Mr. Salem Bentahia, Chairman of The Central Commission of Municipal Council Elections (CCMCE), as well as international and national partners and local governance experts.

During the event, mayors and councilors exchanged ideas on how to better coordinate themselves to achieve common interests. They also had the opportunity to interact with international partners supporting municipalities all over Libya and discuss ways to strengthen the international support to Libyan cities and local governments towards sustainable development and Stabilization.

“This workshop gave us the opportunity to strengthen our relations with international organization representatives and discuss with them possible mechanisms for cooperation. Our priority as elected members of our municipality is to serve citizens, all of them, with no discrimination on grounds of race, skin color, or people with special needs,” said Mr. Abdullah Mahdi Al-Saeedi, member of the municipal Council of Wadi Ataba.

“My goal is to serve persons with disabilities and guarantee their rights are fulfilled within the municipality, especially taking into account that our municipality is considered to be located in a remote area in the south, where there is little awareness of the rights of persons with disabilities,” added a member of the Wadi al-Bawanis Municipality, Ms. Fawzia Rashid al-Taher.

This activity is part of the “Support to the Central Committee for Municipal Council Elections” project that UNDP is implementing in partnership with UNSMIL, and with funds from France, Germany, Italy, The United Kingdom and The Government of Libya.

The participants agreed to keep exploring possible synergies to unravel their potential as engines of development and work together for a democratic future in Libya.

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