« Tunisians residing abroad (TRE) have suffered a double penalty: first of all, the number of their representatives’ seats decreased from 18 to 10. Second of all, the requirement for obtaining 400 sponsors is absurd and unfair » says one candidate who did not make into the upcoming legislative elections. Indeed, the country’s new electoral law has clearly diminished TRE’s chances of benefiting from representation in parliament.
Legislative elections 2022: A catastrophe foretold
New figures quantifying the candidacies presented for Tunisia’s upcoming legislative elections are cause for concern. According to numbers reported by the Independent High Authority for Elections, equality between men and women is naught. Furthermore, not all Tunisians will necessarily benefit from parliamentary representation. And candidates’ visibility in the media is problematic, as coverage will be focused on individual runners not on electoral lists as usual.
Cleanup-Month: Environmental protection relegated to citizens
« It’s a sign of the Ministry’s shortcoming. The minister travels around with her staff and meets with governors, but doesn’t include the communes. The result? A handful of individuals cleaning up plastic » quips the president of the National Federation of Tunisian Communes (FNCT). « The initiative aims to instill a culture of environmentalism. A clean environment is a daily effort and lifelong commitment » retorts a ministry official.
External debt: Tunisia falls back on « facility »
« Dire » is the word that IMF spokesperson Gerry Rice used to describe Tunisia’s economic and financial situation. During an online press conference on May 19, Rice urged the Tunisian government to pursue a reform program as a way out of its current impasse. But is a debt-fuelled solution the only way out? Several NGOs do not believe so, and propose alternative solutions to pull the country out of the crisis.
Amendment of Tunisia’s elections authority law: outstanding independence!
Several months before the referendum, Kais Saied has issued a decree-law to change the composition of the Independent High Authority for Elections (ISIE) council. Members of the authority responsible for supervising elections will now be appointed by presidential decree. The timing of this amendment has prompted divergent opinions. Is the ISIE’s independence no more?
Tunisia’s Interior Ministry makes haste to impose a biometric ID system
Tunisia’s Interior Ministry is taking advantage of the freeze on parliament in the hopes of pushing forward legislation that would create a biometric national identity card. The authority tasked with the protection of personal data as well as national and international NGOs have voiced their concerns about the proposed draft law and risks associated with its adoption.
Taxis in Tunisia: Headed in the wrong direction
Mobile applications for transportation have sprung up as an alternative to standard taxis, but at a much higher cost. While Bolt, In Driver, Yassir and other applications are ostensibly more profitable for drivers, passengers feel they have been left to foot the bill for a worn-down public transportation system. The unchecked liberalization of transportation services in Tunisia is riding on the mediocrity of the sector’s public services.
Timeline of « Coup d’Etat » Accusations in Tunisia: a National Sport
Accusations of coups d’etat in Tunisia have multiplied along with the political crises and institutional delays that the country has witnessed over the past ten years.
Protests in Tunisia : Police Violate Personal Data Protections
More than 1500 individuals—including 500 minors—were arrested since January 2021 during protest movements against the current political and economic system. Besides arbitrary arrests, police also confiscated protestors’ telephones and breached their personal data.
Seven years after its ratification, Tunisia’s Constitution poorly executed
The absence of Tunisia’s Constitutional Court became a prickly issue after the deterioration of former President Beji Caid Essebsi’s health. The problem has now resurfaced with regard to swearing-in of new ministers by the current president. Other constitutional authorities, in the meantime, seem to have been forgotten altogether.
Stolen Assets Held Overseas: Kais Saied Takes on the Case
Ten years after Tunisia’s revolution, the Tunisian Statehas still not managed to recover assets held overseas. Despite of the legal arsenal set up for this task, the list of assets recovered still falls short of expectations. Without any apparent regard for the authorities already set up for the job, on October 22 President Kais Saied issued a decree for the creation of a committee within the Office of the President tasked with recovering money and assets held abroad. The initiative has not gone unnoticed.
Covid 19 in Tunisia: Legal clarifications regarding the « protective masks affair »
During his hearing before parliament’s Administrative Reform Commission, Tunisian Minister of Industry Salah Ben Youssef presented his excuses to the Tunisian public due to suspicions surrounding a project to manufacture two million protective masks in which a parliamentary deputy was implicated. How to shed light on the affair? And how have parliament and control structures reacted?
Covid-19 in Tunisia: Tensions arise between municipalities and central government
Since the announcement of the first cases of Coronavirus on March 2, 2020, Tunisia’s government has taken measures to slow down the epidemic— the curfew, general confinement and telecommuting for certain sectors. Despite their importance at a national level however, these measures do not call into question the responsibility of local authorities in preserving citizens’ health. A responsibility that follows the principle of administrative freedom stipulated in the Code of Local Collectivities. But to what extent have local authorities fulfilled their role in preventing the spread of the virus? Have conflicts arisen with regards to the government’s prerogatives and the powers conferred on the municipalities?
Ennahli, the mountain ravaged by real estate development
Ariana, the « city of roses » once known for its greenery and gardens from the Hafsid dynasty, is not what it used to be. Since the Urban Development Plan (PAU) was revised and agricultural map updated, the green spaces at the outskirts of park Ennahli have diminished considerably, exacerbating the risk of flooding. And real estate developers are profiting.
Media and corruption: Disappointed with ISIE, HAICA turns to INLUCC
On February 18, the High Independent Authority for Audiovisual Communication (HAICA) appealed to the Anti-Corruption Authority (INLUCC) regarding illicit broadcasting by three television and radio stations. The outlets in question, which air their programs without a HAICA-issued license to operate, are Nessma TV, Zitouna TV and radio station Quran Karim.
Saloua Smaoui, from cyber-policing to the presidential campaign
Before aspiring to a potential future as first lady, Saloua Smaoui, the wife of presidential candidate Nabil Karoui, was an industrial engineer and, more notably, a leading officer at Microsoft. In this article, we take a glimpse at the lucrative deals made with the hangmen of cyber-dissidents.
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