Long Live Bureaucracy

Do Libya's rulers sometimes forget that we can see what they do?

In recent days the General National Congress (GNC) has approved the creation of a new body -- the Administrative Control Authority (ACA) -- to cut through red tape and improve the performance of the country’s bureaucracy.

A worthwhile objective, most will agree, but rather than taking the opportunity to incorporate the existing Audit Bureau into the structure, as was proposed, the parliament decided to run the two organisations in parallel; without a hint of irony, they ruled that the ACA will report directly to the GNC, while the Audit Bureau will continue to work to the prime minister’s office.

In a country in which more than half of the working population is employed in the public sector, the truism that productivity is inversely proportional to paperwork might not be fully appreciated, but if Libya is to grow into a fully-functioning economy it needs to streamline its systems and trim its public payroll.

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