Some Tunisian politicians say they oppose Said’s alleged plans

FILE PHOTO: Tunisian President Kais Saied takes the oath of office in Tunis
FILE PHOTO: Tunisian President Kais Saied takes the oath of office in Tunisia
FILE PHOTO: Tunisian President Kais Saied takes the oath of office in Tunis, Tunisia on October 23, 2019. Reuters / Zauber Suisse / File photo

September 10, 2021

TUNIS (Reuters) – Some prominent Tunisian politicians came out against the president on Friday to suspend or change the constitution, as one of his advisers said he plans to seize ruling powers in July.

President Kais Saied intends to suspend the constitution and will introduce a new version for a referendum, his adviser Walid Hajam told Reuters on Thursday in the first clear sign of his plans since his intervention more than six weeks ago. Told.

Saeed’s move to sack the prime minister, suspend parliament and take executive power on July 25 appeared to be widely popular, but his political enemies called it a coup.

He has plunged Tunisia into its biggest political crisis since the 2011 uprising, which introduced democracy and a 2014 constitution, which divided powers between an elected parliament and a president.

The main labor union, the UGTT, which has one million members, Tunisia’s most powerful political force, did not comment on Hajjem’s remarks, but it has previously called on Sayyid to change the political system.

The moderate Islamist Ennahda, the largest party in parliament that has condemned Saeed’s moves since July 25, did not issue a new statement on Friday, but a senior member said the president must act within constitutional limits.

Saeed has no right to change the political system from outside the constitution, said Ennahda official Abdel-Latif al-Makki, a former government minister.

The Attaire party, the third largest in parliament, said on Friday that it rejects “any individual attempt to take advantage of the legitimate anger of the Tunisian people, who do not enjoy a consensus to implement political alternatives.”

It said that Tunisia’s political and economic crises were not due to the constitution but to the corruption of the ruling class.

Abir Mausi, leader of the Free Destorian Party and a supporter of the former autocratic administration that was ousted in 2011, said suspending the constitution was dangerous.

“Who will guarantee our freedom?” he said.

(Reporting by Tarek Amara; Writing by Angus McDowall; Editing by Richard Chang)

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