Saturday, October 29, 2011

An interview;Mouammar Khadafi and Mauritius


Hamza Goolbar

What was your first reaction when you learnt of the killing of Colonel Gaddafi?
At first I could not believe it. There were so many rumours about his fleeing the country, his capture and even his death. When I got the news on Thursday last (20.10.2011), I phoned his son, Muktasem. He was crying and confirmed of this terrible news. I was shocked as well as all members of my family who met the two sons of Gaddafi, namely Muktasem in 2008 and Saadi in 2010 when they were on holiday in Mauritius. The latest news is that Saadi and Saiif are in Niger, Al Mohammad and Hanibal are in Algeria together with their sister Aisha and their mother. Muktasem and Aisha’s husband were killed as well as another son and three grand-children during the last hours of Colonel Gaddafi. This tragedy has thrown darkness in our home.

According to Islamic rites a person should be buried the soonest possible after his death, how is it that the corpse of Gaddafi was exposed for visitors?
They kept the corpse as a war trophy but more to be used as a bait to attract members of his family when they made a public statement saying that the dead body would be delivered to them. Knowing quite well that the National Transitional Council (NTC) has made a list of all family members to be killed at sight, of course nobody came to recover the dead body. With such treatment given to a Muslim Head of State, they have not only insulted the status of the man but that with such a blasphemy they have insulted at the same time Islam the world over. This has shocked television viewers all over the world, whatever their faith, even Mahmoud Djibril, the newly appointed head of the transitional government does not want to associate himself with such a cruel act.

Do you think that it was a revenge against the Lockerbie plane disaster in which hundreds of westerners died and which was said to be the act of Libyans?
The future will surely tell who those responsible for the Lockerbie tragedy are. This was constantly denied by the Libyan leader who however    accepted to pay compensation to the victims. But the problem became acute when Colonel Gaddafi went to the United Nations Assembly in 2009, during celebrations marking the 40th anniversary of this world forum and tore the UN Charter before all the delegates. This was the summum of his ‘arrogant’ act and the decision was taken to eliminate him from the international scene. His ‘insulting remarks’ made towards the wife of Sarkozy added fuel to fire. But the real trouble came when on 14 February this year he assembled around 300,000 people in Tripoli and addressed them in a most revolutionary language. He told them of his intention to launch an Africa Monetary Fund and urge them not to look any more towards the West, ‘who has gone bankrupt’ but rather to the emerging countries of Asia. He told them that ‘as from now on we should promote a Green-Yellow relationship.’ I think that this speech was very much responsible for his brutal killing as it brought a real panic in the minds of western leaders.

How do you interpret the ‘silence’ of African countries and in particular Mauritius?
Colonel Gaddafi always had a sympathetic ear for the demands of African countries and subsequently helped them economically. Mauritius has also benefited a lot from his generosity. Since the establishment of diplomatic ties with Libya hundreds of Mauritians have visited Tripoli upon the invitation of the Colonel, including artists, youths, many journalists and a great number of politicians. Even after the closure of the Bureau here in 1984, Jean Claude de l’Estrac and Bashir Khodabux who were in government visited Tripoli. More recently parliamentarians who visited Libya include Kalyanee Jugroo, Reza Issack and Von Mally. It is to be noted that the colonel himself attended the OAU conference here in 1976 and was highly impressed by our hospitality and since then a true friendship was established between the two countries with frequent visits of Mauritians of all social levels to Tripoli. A few years later, Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam made an official visit to Tripoli upon the invitation of Colonel Gaddafi, accompanied by the then Minister of Youth, Hurrydev Ramchurn. Since then some 500 Mauritians were welcomed in the Libyan capital.

What will happen to Libya after the killing of Gaddafi?
Gaddafi's measures and policies of governance and leadership qualities were second to none. It took only a few months for some foolish outsiders to destroy the image of an inspirational leader. It is crystal clear that America and NATO countries want to stabilize their economies with Libyan oil. Gaddafi came for the masses and died with the masses in his place of birth. This is a great trait of an assertive leader who never bowed to western pressure.
“For 40 years, or was it longer, I can't remember, I did all I could to give people houses, hospitals, schools, and when you were hungry, I gave you food. I even made Benghazi into a farmland from the desert. Let this testament be my voice to the world, that I stood up to crusader attacks of NATO, stood up to cruelty, stood up to betrayal, stood up to the West and its colonialist ambitions, and that I stood with my African brothers, my true Arab and Muslim brothers, as a beacon of light,” he wrote in his Green Book. What will happen next is in the hands of God!

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