Thursday, 29 March 2012

Will Gaddafi’s spy chief spill beans?

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 The arrest of Former Libyan strong man Muammar Gaddafi’s spy chief, Brig. Gen Abdulla Senussi, has caused much controversy in Tripoli and all over the world. This is seen as opening Pandora’s Box especially for all he served with.  

BBC reported that Senussi was arrested in Nouakhchott Mauritania after landing there from Morocco on a fake passport. After his apprehension, the new regime in Tripoli quickly asked Mauritania to hand Senussi over to Tripoli something that was not accepted by Mauritania.  

Senussi who is said to be Gaddafi’s black box is wanted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague for various crimes against humanity alleged to have been committed under Gaddafi’s 42 years rule. “Senussi is Gaddafi's black box, he has a lot of information," Tripoli resident Mustafa Jhyma was quoted by Reuters as saying. Knowing such many secrets does not only make Senussi vurnerable but also those in power today. They would not like to see their tainted and dark past been put on the agora for every eye to see and ridicule. 

Senussi is also wanted in France where he faces charges involving money laundering, embezzeling public funds and misuse of power for personal gains. This is according to Intepol report quoted by BBC recently. Interpol has already issued a ‘red notice’. Senussi also is wanted by France where he faces a life imprisonment after being found guilty and sentenced in absentia after allegedly he involved in the attack on a French plane that killed 170 in 1989. What is not clear is why French authorities waited till the fall of Gadaffi to ask Interpol to make a move? And if there was a request from Interpol from the time the offence was committed, then why didn’t Interpol work on it?   

Those in the know say that if Senussi is not returned or being handed over to Tripoli, chances are; he is going to be finished before spilling the beans to the extent that the heads for the current regime will find themselves in hot soup. Senussi has many secrets of the former regime as a spy Tzar and Gaddafi’s consgliore. This creates a lot of pressure on and fear for those who served in Gaddafi’s rule but are currently serving in the National Transition Council (NTC). One of them is the head of NTC, Mustapha Abdul Jalil who then was the minister for Justice. In other words, the first person who would like to see Senussi handed over to NTC or killed is Abdul Jalil himself. Abdul Jalil wants Senussi dead or alive in order to make sure that his dirtier-- past, currently unknown-- is concealed and sealed with the death or detention of Senussi. This is obvious given that Abdul Jalil as minister of justice knows and assented for many so-called Gaddafi’s injustices or crimes against humanity. 

Another reason why the new regime in Tripoli  wants Senussi is having an access to massive investment Gaddafi made all over the world. The new regime worries that, if Senussi is left in unsafe hands, chances are, he can use financial muscles he has to make a deal and get away with it. Many analysts wonder as to why Libya’s new regime is seeking the extradition of Senussi with much more urgency even than that of wanting Saad Gaddafi being extradited from Niger. Of course, NTC knows that Senussi has more information, secrets even access to weath Gaddafi made and protected than Gaddafi’s sons.  

Now that Senussi is under arrest in Mauritania, will he be handed over? If not, will he make a deal and get away with it? Will he be handed over to ICC where he is likely to spill beans and therefore endanger the lives of current NTC tops? If he is handed over to ICC even though this is impossible due to the fact that
Mauritania is not a signatory to Rome Statue, will he keep mum and die alone? Will he use this opportunity to toast his enemies? Will he be handed over to NTC so as to be neutralized and die with his top secrets?  The answers to those questions depends on what will decided upon regarding the plight of Senussi which in essence is the plight of most of  NTC’s top brass. Will Senussi be eliminated without spilling the beans or otherwise? 
By the way, do our current Senussi-like figures scoop any reasonable lesson from such kind of goings-on?
Source: African Executive Magazine March 28, 2012.

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