Tripoli: Desperate Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi begged for his life by offering gold and money before he was killed, a witness has revealed.
Twenty-eight-year-old Hammad Mufti Ali, the commander of a brigade in Sirte, said that Gaddafi kept on pleading for life despite being ridiculed by an opponent to pray like a good Muslim before dying rather than lowering his self-esteem.
"He was pulled from the drain and he was pushed around. He said he was willing to offer anything in exchange for his life - he said he had money and gold for us if we spared his life. He was losing a lot of blood - he was 69 years old and his body could not take it. He was in a bad way. He had wounds everywhere from shrapnel and from being beaten," Sky News quoted Ali, as saying.
"At one point someone screamed at him that instead of talking about money, as a good Muslim he should have been praying for his soul to be entrusted to God before dying. But he just kept saying he was ready to give us lots and lots of money and gold," he added.
Reports suggest that Gaddafi apparently had over USD 200 billion in cash and gold hidden away with some of it spread in secret accounts across the world.
Following the start of the revolution, it was reported that he had flown some of his wealth to Zimbabwe.
The International Monetary Fund has said it believes Libya had at least 140 tonnes of gold hidden away - if not more, and that the bulk was hidden in the vaults of the central bank in Tripoli. But he was thought to have taken several bars with him to use as bargaining chips.
First Published: Sunday, October 23, 2011, 11:26