Tue. Jan 18th, 2022

The union says the president’s proposal will not guarantee Tunisia’s return to democracy.

Tunisia’s powerful General Labor Union (UGTT) has criticized President Kais Saied’s roadmap out of political crisis, saying it does not go far enough.

Last month, President Saied announced a plan to move past the political crisis that has paralyzed the country since he suspended parliament, fired the prime minister and accepted the executive last year.

These include a constitutional referendum to be held on July 25 following an online public consultation starting in January, and parliamentary elections at the end of 2022.

“Setting a date for elections is an important step in ending the exceptional situation, but it does not break with individual rules and exclusion,” the union said in its first comment on Tuesday. president’s plan.

Saied, who wants to strengthen his authority, called on citizens to send proposals through electronic platforms from January 1 to March 20 as part of a wide-ranging national consultation process that will help draft a new constitution.

The UGTT, which won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2015 as part of the National Dialogue Quartet and represents one million workers, said the online consultation could lead to a monopoly of power and the abolition of the opposition.

“We call [on the government] to resume social dialogue, start negotiations on the wages of civil servants and start tackling basic issues in a participatory way, ”reads the statement.

Last month, the UGTT request for early elections, and says he is concerned about the country’s democratic gains due to the president’s unwillingness to announce a plan for political reforms.

In a speech on national television on 13 December, Saied announced a reform package and promised to hold a constitutional referendum.

Saied’s one-man mission to rebuild Tunisia’s broken political structures has led to accusations that he is establishing a new dictatorship in the birthplace of the Arab Spring uprisings.

The envoys from seven Western countries plus the European Union last month encouraged Tunisia to respect “fundamental freedoms” and set a timeline for a return to democratic institutions.

Saied’s seizure of power in July 2021 has garnered support from many Tunisians who are tired of political parties considered deeply corrupt and unable to resolve the country’s deep social and economic woes.

He has since faced mass demonstrations and growing accusations that he is becoming a new dictator.

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