Information Minister blames African leaders for Libyan Slave trade

By Maame Aba Afful
Information Minister, Mustapha Hamid

Minister of Information, Mustapha Hamid has blamed African leaders for the slave trade crisis going on in Libya.

He said the silence of the African Union (AU) during the overthrow of the then Libyan President Muammar Gaddafi in 2011 is responsible for the country’s mess.

 “We can blame the AU for standing by and allowing foreign powers to remove our leadership that has resulted in the thing that is going on [in Libya],” the minister said.

Libya was plunged into chaos after its leader, Muammar Gaddafi was killed in an operation carried out by the United States and its allies during the 2011 uprising.

Former US President Barack Obama admitted in a 2016 interview, admitted that overthrowing the Libyan president was his worst mistake.

Libya has three governments, the UN-backed regime that controls major parts of Tripoli and the two others led by militant groups that are controlling other territories.

The presence of militias has created a situation where the country has become a major departure point for migrants trying to reach Europe.

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) has estimated there are between 700,000 to one million African migrants, awaiting their turn to cross the Mediterranean.

Mustapha Hamid, however, argued that the case was different when he was in Tripoli in 1992 to attend an African Students’ Union conference.

“Even at that time there were a lot of Ghanaians working there but the situation, we all agree, ever since the overthrow of Gaddafi has worsened,” he said.

He believes the welfare of Libyans would have been improved had the US and its allies not undertaken that operation.

Meanwhile, the government of Ghana, he said is working to create more opportunities for the youth in order to stop illegal migration.

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