By Ali Sheaib for Al-Monitor. Any opinions expressed are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Libya Business News.
July 7, 2013, marked a full year since fair elections were held for the first time in the ancient and modern history of Libya. On the same day in 2012, fair elections were held for the first time without the intervention of the authorities in favor of a candidate at the expense of another, just as they were free from vote-buying, which many politicians have not hesitated to use in elections in many Arab countries.
On this day last year, Libyans headed to the polls in various districts to elect members of the General National Congress, which took over the reins of power from the National Transitional Council (NTC) that was established by Mustafa Abdul Jalil.
Jalil appointed a member from every local council in the cities that were liberated from the rule of late Libyan President Moammar Gadhafi.
The Justice and Development Party began its secretive political activities more than half a century ago, at the hand of Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood member Ezz al-Din Ibrahim and his companions Mahmoud and Jalal Saada, who sought refuge in Libya in 1949. They also sought protection from Idris Senussi, the king of Cyrenaica back then. The king offered them refuge after they fled Egypt after being accused of the assassination of the then Egyptian Prime Minister Nukrashi Pasha by militants affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood, which was established by Hassan al-Banna in 1928.
They started working in schools as teachers at that time. They sought to spread the principles of the Muslim Brotherhood in the province of Cyrenaica.