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Tunisia - Election - 2019

Tunisia delayed the first round of its presidential elections by one week to November 17, a spokesman for the elections commission said on 29 March 2019. The initial date had been set for 10 November 2019 but this conflicted with an Islamic holiday, when many Tunisians are travelling. The parliamentary race is expected to be fought closely by the moderate Islamist Ennahda party, the more secular Tahya Tounes party of Prime Minister Youssef Chahed, and the Nidaa Tounes party led by Hafedh Caid Essebsi, the presidents son. They rule the North African country together but their coalition has been hit by infighting that has hampered decision-making and slowed economic reforms demanded by foreign donors.

Tunisia is a constitutional republic with a multiparty, unicameral parliamentary system and a president with powers specified in the constitution. The constitution provides citizens the ability to choose their government in free and fair periodic elections held by secret ballot and based on universal and equal suffrage. On February 2, parliament passed an electoral law that codified regulations regarding municipal and local elections, as well as granting members of the armed forces and security services the right to vote. Security forces had historically been denied suffrage on the grounds that the security forces must be completely impartial.

In 2014 the country held free and fair parliamentary elections that resulted in the Nida Tounes (Call of Tunisia) Party winning a plurality of the votes. President Beji Caid Essebsi came to office in 2014 after winning the first democratic presidential elections. Nida Tounes formed a coalition government with the Nahda Party and several smaller parties. On 11 September 2017, parliament approved Prime Minister Youssef Chaheds second government, composed of 28 ministers and 15 state secretaries.

Of the approximately 200 registered parties, 70 ran electoral lists in the 2014 parliamentary elections. Authorities rejected parties that did not receive accreditation due to incomplete applications or because their programs were inconsistent with laws prohibiting discrimination and parties based on religion.

Tunisians headed to the polls on 06 May 2018 to vote in the country's first free municipal elections since the removal of President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali and his government in 2011. Having been postponed four times, the elections came as a relief to many Tunisians who, at times, had seen some of the most basic services disrupted as a result of the political uncertainty that followed the revolution. The country's municipalities have historically been overshadowed by the central authorities in Tunis, which left little to no room for deliberation and progress to take effect in the rest of the country, especially in the rural and less industrialised interior regions.

Prime Minister Youssef Chahed has been undermined by his secular Nidaa Tounes party, which has tried to sack him. The co-ruling moderate Islamists of the Ennahda rejected that but didnt want him to run in the 2019 election.

The current situation in Tunisia must be resolved by political consensus or resignation because there is no good government for all time and place," Tunisian President Bji Kaid Sibsi said in an interview with three local television channels in Tunis on 16 July 2018. Al-Sibsi stressed that the current situation should not continue, adding: "We have reached the point where we must say that we are going from bad to worse and must stop this, and can not succeed any government to respond to the demands of the people if it has no political scope and achieve consensus and consensus Politically with all forces."

"If this does not work, then the prime minister should either resign from his post or go to the House of Representatives to regain confidence," al-Sibsi said. The Tunisian president said that the prime minister, Youssef, should attention to the current situation rather than thinking about running for the next presidential election, adding: "All eyes are heading towards 2019, but who governs now should not think of 2019 and should think In the success of the government, and who did not succeed in 2017 and 2018, will not come to power in 2019."

Several political parties opposed to Yusuf's government face charges of working to create a climate and factors that will help him run for elections scheduled for the end of next year 2019.

President Bji Kaid Sibsi called Essebsi to achieve a national consensus without exclusion of any party , including helping to overcome the political stage and the current economic and social in the country, said: "We have weakness in the rule of law and the political situation is fragile in Tunisia and we are moving in a young democracy experience, and this makes it imperative for all parties to work together to alleviate Of the political tension between the various parties. "

He criticized the attempt of some progressive forces in Tunisia to exclude the Renaissance movement from participating in dialogue and government, saying: "Renaissance is a strong party and I defended the Renaissance, and we do not want to reduce the Renaissance and no party." Al-Sibsi referred to the National Salvation Bloc, which includes the parties of the Tunis project, Afaq and Al-Masar, which demands that the renaissance be excluded from the government before participating in it.

Dr. Laila Hammami is considered the first woman to run for the 2019 presidential race. She believes that the status of women has exceeded the level of legislative and political status, and that it is time to turn that status to the actual potential that will be reflected by the rise of women to the platform of governance in the first democratic Arab country, which is available in Tunisia.

Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi on 25 September 2018 blamed Prime Minister Youssef Chahed for the political crisis in the country, calling on him to either resign or initiate a vote of confidence in the countrys parliament. Essebsi pointed out that the law did not provide him with powers to oust the countrys prime minister. The political crisis in Tunisia erupted after Chaheds decision to oust Energy Minister Khaled Kaddour, as well as four other high-level officials in the energy sector. According to local media reports, the prime ministers actions were linked to the governments fight against corruption.

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