To The Polls

On May 20, President Saied appointed Sadok Belaïd, a former constitutional law professor to head a committee to draft a “new constitution for a new republic.” One month after (June 20), the committee did submit its proposed draft to the presidency. On June 30, the Official Gazette published a draft constitution, to be put to a referendum on July 25. Several Tunisian non-governmental organizations, did express in a joint statement their deep concerns regarding the backsliding on democratic and human rights in the draft. According to these institutions, drafting a new constitution is on called for and shifting from 2014 spring constitution is tantamount to a coup d’état.
Despite these reservations, the referendum went on as scheduled with 30% of the population of voting age participating and 94% effectively casting their votes. The holding of the referendum whose results are expected by the end of the month of August, has been regarded by many of President Kais Saied supporters as a major step towards the realisation of his long term yearning project which has been blocked by a bureaucratic political class that sees no good in the country’s progress towards emergence.
With nearly all the constitutional barriers now lifted and all hands on deck to give President Saied a push, it is left on the different stakeholders to revise their strategies because the revolutionary reform train is about leaving the train station. For the political parties, instead of criticising and calling for boycott, they should encourage their militants to register massively and vote when the time comes. The introduction of Regional Councils with considerable powers, is a very good pace setter for grassroots politicians to re-organise themselves ahead of the parliamentary elections that are ...



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