Libya finmin says to resign soon, cites "wastage"

Fri May 11, 2012 6:11am GMT

By Ali Shuaib

TRIPOLI (Reuters) - Libya's interim finance minister said on Thursday he would resign soon because of "wastage of public funds", citing a now-halted scheme to compensate former fighters and pressure from them for payment.

"I will resign. I can't keep working in these circumstances," Hassan Ziglam told Reuters in an interview. "There is a wastage of public money because nobody fears God."

When asked when he would hand in his resignation, he said "soon", but did not elaborate.

Libya last month halted a scheme to pay compensation to people who fought in last year's revolt against Muammar Gaddafi because it was riddled with corruption and paying out cash to people who did not qualify.

A spokesman for the ruling National Transitional Council said at the time that a list of those eligible under the scheme - which paid out 1.8 billion Libyan dinars in less than three months - included people who were dead or who had never fought.

Ziglam said the decision to pay compensation to former rebel fighters was made before the current interim government was appointed in November.

"I stopped the payment of 1.3 billion dinars," he said, citing inconsistent lists for those who were due to receive payment.

Disgruntled militiamen demanding cash or jobs in recognition of the role they played in last year's revolt to oust Gaddafi have now taken to the streets in sometimes violent protests.   Continued...

Libyan National Transitional Council (NTC) Chairman Mustafa Abdel Jalil speaks to the media after a weekly meeting with the Interim Council in Tripoli April 22, 2012. REUTERS/Ismail Zitouny
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