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The president of the Tunisian constitutional commission denounces that the published text is different from the agreed one

The president of the Tunisian constitutional commission denounces that the published text is different from the agreed one

He warns that the powers given to the president “could open the way to a dictatorial regime”

July 4. (EUROPA PRESS) –

The president of the commission in charge of preparing the new Tunisian Constitution has denounced that the text published in the official newspaper and that will be submitted to a referendum is not the one that was presented to the country’s president, Kais Saied.

“It is our duty to affirm forcefully and sincerely that the text, published in the ‘Official Gazette’ and presented for a referendum, is nothing like the one we prepared and presented to the president,” Sadok Belaid said in a letter published in the newspaper ‘Assabah’.

Thus, he has said “sorry” what happened and has moved “to the Tunisian people, who have the last word”, that the commission “is totally innocent”. In this sense, he has warned that the document contains “considerable risks and shortcomings that need to be denounced”.

Belaid has specifically pointed to the modifications to article 80 of the Tunisian Constitution of 2014 regarding the expansion of the powers guaranteed to the Presidency, which have sparked much criticism among the opposition.

In this way, he has spoken of “an imminent danger” in the face of “too great” powers granted to the president, in conditions that “could open the way to a dictatorial regime”, as reported by the Tunisian radio station Mosaique FM.

Finally, Belaid pointed out that the differences in the text are also reflected in an “incomplete and arbitrary” organization of the Constitutional Court and its powers, with an appointment system that “reduces its independence”, amid criticism against Saied for his interference in the Tunisian judicial apparatus.

In this context, Amine Mahfuz, a member of the Consultative Body for a New Republic, has asked Saied to review the project published in the ‘Official Gazette’ and has criticized it for being “adapted to Kais Saied”.


The document, published last week, has been prepared by a committee made up of people appointed by Saied himself, who in July 2021 assumed all powers after suspending Parliament -later dissolved- and dissolving the Government.

The Magna Carta project reflects that the president has total immunity in the exercise of his functions and appoints the prime minister and the ministers proposed by the head of government, to whom he can delegate his powers in the event of a temporary vacancy in the exercise of power. .

On the other hand, the president has the authority to adopt “exceptional measures” in the event of “imminent danger” for the State, while he also has authority over the justice apparatus and the Army, amid complaints about Saied’s will to impose an autocratic model.

The Constitution thus concentrates powers in the figure of the president, leaving aside the National Assembly, which will be made up of two chambers, while a Council of Regions will be created with the declared objective of improving the representation of the population.

If approved in a referendum, the document will replace the Magna Carta approved in 2014 following the overthrow in 2011 of the then president, Zine el Abidine ben Ali, within the framework of a massive wave of popular protests in what is known as ‘Spring Arab’.

Saied is facing growing criticism for the economic crisis and the exceptional measures adopted since May 2021, a measure denounced by many parties, including the Islamist Ennahda, which had the majority of seats in the dissolved Parliament.

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Written by Editor TLN

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