By Ahmed Seguya
The son and one-time heir apparent of late Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi on Sunday announced his candidacy for the country’s presidential election next month, Libya’s election agency said.
The Elections agency said in a statement that Seif al-Islam submitted his candidacy papers in the southern town of Sabah.
Gadhafi’s son was captured by fighters late in 2011, the year when a popular uprising fell his father after more than 40 years in power. Moammar Gadhafi was later killed amid the ensuing fighting that would turn into a civil war.
Clad in a traditional Libyan robe, turban and spectacles, Seif in a video released by the elections office where he registered, said that God will decide the right path for the country’s future.
Seif al-Islam was released in June 2017 after more than five years of detention, and in July told media in an exclusive interview that he was considering a run for the country’s top office. Libya is set to hold presidential elections on Dec. 24.
After years of United Nations -led attempts to usher in a more democratic future and bring the war to an end.
The long-awaited vote still faces challenges, including unresolved issues over election laws and occasional infighting among armed groups. Other obstacles include the deep rift that remains between the country’s east and west, split for years by the war, and the presence of thousands of foreign fighters and troops.
Gadhafi had eight children, most of whom played significant roles in his regime. His son Muatassim was killed at the same time Gadhafi was captured and slain. Two other sons, Seif al-Arab and Khamis, were killed earlier in the uprising. Another son, al-Saadi Gadhafi, was released in September after more than seven years of detention in the capital of Tripoli following his extradition from neighbouring Niger.