Eight years since Muammar Gaddafi was killed – facts

October 20, 2011 was the day on which longtime Libyan leader, Muammar Gaddafi’s name was added to the list of African presidents who died in office. Eight years after his death, he is being remembered as a tyrant by some and to others a hero because of what he did in his country. Ever since he was killed, there seems to be no end to disturbing news coming out of the Northern African country.

UN-led negotiations to unite the divided country — it has two parliaments, two governments, two militia coalitions that have been competing for control of a rapidly failing state since summer 2014 — are stalling.

Criminal gangs – often the same militias that have had the run of the country since Gaddafi’s fall – are doing a brisk trade in people smuggling, sending off desperate migrants and refugees on rickety boats across the Mediterranean.

For 41 years until his demise in October 2011, Muammar Gaddafi did some truly amazing things for his country and repeatedly tried to unite and empower the whole of Africa.

Local rebel groups were aided by western forces, specifically, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) to overthrow the man who had ruled Libya for close to five decades.

Here are ten things Gaddafi did for Libya that you may not know about:

  1. In Libya a home is considered a natural human right

In Gaddafi’s Green Book it states: “The house is a basic need of both the individual and the family, therefore it should not be owned by others”. Gaddafi’s Green Book is the formal leader’s political philosophy, it was first published in 1975 and was intended reading for all Libyans even being included in the national curriculum.

  1. Education and medical treatment were all free

Under Gaddafi, Libya could boast one of the best healthcare services in the Middle East and Africa.  In addition, if a Libyan citizen could not access the desired educational course or correct medical treatment in Libya they were funded to go abroad.

  1. Gaddafi carried out the world’s largest irrigation project

The largest irrigation system in the world also known as the great manmade river was designed to make water readily available to all Libyan’s across the entire country. The Gaddafi government funded it and it is said that Gaddafi himself called it “the eighth wonder of the world”.

  1. It was free to start a farming business

If any Libyan wanted to start a farm, they were given a house, farmland and livestock and seeds all free of charge.

  1. A bursary was given to mothers with newborn babies.

When a Libyan woman gave birth she was given 5000 (US dollars) for herself and the child.

  1. Electricity was free

Electricity was free in Libya meaning absolutely no electric bills!

  1. Petrol was cheap

During Gaddafi’s reign the price of petrol in Libya was as low as 0.14 (US dollars) per litre.

  1. Gaddafi raised the level of education

Before Gaddafi only 25% of Libyans were literate. This figure was brought up to 87% with 25% earning university degrees.

  1. Libya had its own state bank

Libya had its own State bank, which provided loans to citizens at zero percent interest by law and they had no external debt.

  1. The gold dinar

Before the fall of Tripoli and his untimely demise, Gaddafi was trying to introduce a single African currency linked to gold. Following in the footsteps of the late great pioneer Marcus Garvey who first coined the term “United States of Africa”. Gaddafi wanted to introduce and only trade in the African gold Dinar – a move that would have thrown the world economy into chaos.

The Dinar was widely opposed by the ‘elite’ of today’s society and who could blame them. African nations would have finally had the power to bring itself out of debt and poverty and only trade in this precious commodity.



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