This blog's main topics are the political situation in Tunisia and all the activities surrounding the election of the Constituent Assembly that was held on October 23rd 2011. You will also find interviews and discussions that I conducted with politicians and bloggers from the Revolution. All this from a Canadian perspective in Tunis.
dimanche 30 octobre 2011
Who’s in charge ? The party leader or the candidates ?
Without a doubt, the controversy of Tunisia’s first
election is the Al Aridha Chaabia party and its obscure leader Hechmi Hamdi.
Let’s quickly go over the facts. The day after the
election, Monday October 24th, initial results published by the ISIE
supreme instance for the elections)revealed modest gains for this practically unknown party. At first, Aridha
Chaabia won seats in rural regions of Tunisia.
As the ISIE results continued coming in over the
following days, the party was winning seats in various areas across the
country. Aridha Chaabia finally wound up in third place with 28 seats, only two
less than the Congrès pour la République (CPR). Pretty impressive for a party
unknown to journalists before the election.
However, this seemed too good to be true. Questions
were being asked: how could an unknown party nearly finish in second place?
Accusations of electoral fraud were expressed by
various groups. Two days after the election, as the final results were still
being tabulated, ISIE president Kamel Jendoubi suggested that some Aridha
Chaabia lists might be invalidated,
While presenting the final results of the election on
Thursday evening, the ISIE confirmed suspicions by announcing that six lists
(nine seats) were disqualified.
In response to this announcement, Hechmi Hamdi stated
that he was withdrawing all his electoral lists from the Constituent Assembly
and that no legal action would be undertaken.
Worse yet, disqualified candidates have decided to
oppose ISIE’s conclusion in court which is in disagreement with their leader’s
Finally, not to be outdone in this political soap
opera, Hechmi Hamdi retracted his announcement only a few hours after making it
and asked for forgiveness for his comments following the ISIE’s decision.
As stated by his candidates, M. Hamdi now maintains
that all 19 elected members of his party will participate in the Assembly and
that the others will be contesting ISIE’s conclusions in court.
Obviously the party leader not only has problems with
the ISIE but he also has to deal with a serious lack of discipline within his
troops. This drama will continue to unfold has the nine disqualified candidates
will shortly undertake legal measures. Expect that this isn’t the last
surprising turn of events for this party…