Lebanon's ambassador to Germany appeared slated to become the country's next prime minister after getting the support of former PMs, Hezbollah, Amal and the Free Patriotic Movement on Sunday.
Mustapha Adib was named by four former prime ministers on the eve of binding consultations between the president and parliamentary blocs on their choice for the post.
“The target of political and national action at this stage must be to save Lebanon from what is suffering from,” said Fouad Siniora, an ex-PM, reading a joint statement.
The announcement came a day before French President Emmanuel Macron was due to arrive for a two day-visit, during which he was expected to press Lebanese officials to formulate a new political pact to lift the country out of its multiple crises, political stalemates, and entrenched corruption and of mismanagement.
It’s Macron’s second visit to Beirut in less than a month. He came days after the devastating Aug. 4 blast in the port of Beirut that killed 190 people, wounded 6,000 and pulverized parts of the capital.
Adib is the only name to emerge so far as a favorite for the post of prime minister, who according to Lebanon’s sectarian-based power sharing system has to be a Sunni. The candidate who gets the most support is asked to form the new cabinet.
Hezbollah and Amal will also nominate Adib, the candidate put forward by Saad Hariri’s al-Mustaqbal movement, a senior source said on Sunday.
Free Patriotic Movement leader Gebran Bassil told Reuters his party will do the same.
Prime Minister Hassan Diab’s government resigned on Aug. 10, six days after nearly 3,000 tons of ammonium nitrate exploded in Beirut’s port.
Adib, who has been Lebanon's ambassador to Germany since 2013, served as an advisor to one of Lebanon's former Prime Ministers, Najib Mikati. He took part in the committee in charge of writing Lebanon’s new electoral law in 2005 and 2006, and acted as his chief of Cabinet in 2011.
Adib, 48, and a native of the northern city of Tripoli, holds a PhD in law and political sciences and had taught in universities in Lebanon and France.