| 21 April 2024, Sunday |

Ghannouchi: I fought against Bourguiba and Ben Ali, I am ready to resist Saied

The meeting of various political and intellectual parties meeting to resist the “unconstitutional measures” taken by President Kais Saied, was welcomed by the Speaker of the Tunisian Parliament, Rached Ghannouchi.
During his visit on Tuesday evening to the headquarters of the hunger strike organised by Citizens Against the Coup, Ghannouchi said: “I carried out hunger strikes during the regimes of [Habib] Bourguiba and [Zine El Abidine] Ben Ali, and it seems that I will put myself at your disposal, and I am ready to start the hunger strike from now [against President Saied] because it is noble action and the country needs it.”
“Saied wants to restore failed experiments, to rule without parties and with one vote, and to assume power and manage it as he pleases. The country is facing the danger of tyranny and the mentality of exclusion.”
Ghannouchi stressed “the importance of political and societal action to oppose all the unconstitutional and undemocratic measures taken on July 25th.”
He warned that “after more than ten years since the revolution, some still think about excluding one group or another, forgetting that Tunisia is like a ship that sails with all its passengers.”
Adding that no one has the right to repeat the dictatorship that the country experienced for half a century.
Saied has held nearly total power since 25 July when he sacked the prime minister, suspended parliament and assumed executive authority citing a national emergency.
He appointed a prime minister on 29 September and a government has since been formed.
The majority of the country’s political parties slammed the move as a “coup against the constitution” and the achievements of the 2011 revolution. Critics say Saied’s decisions have strengthened the powers of the presidency at the expense of parliament and the government, and that he aims to transform the country’s government into a presidential system.
On more than one occasion, Saied, who began a five-year presidential term in 2019, said that his exceptional decisions are not a coup, but rather measures within the framework of the constitution to protect the state from “imminent danger”.