Tunisian President Qais Said said, on Monday, that “the recent cabinet reshuffle made by Prime Minister Hicham El-Mechichi did not respect the procedures stipulated in the constitution,” while the government confirmed the ratification of the amendment.
On Tuesday, the Tunisian parliament will hold a session to vote on the cabinet reshuffle, which includes 11 ministerial portfolios out of 25.
A statement issued by the Tunisian presidency said that Saeed emphasized – during a meeting of the National Security Council at the Carthage Palace in the capital Tunis – that the ministerial reshuffle did not respect the procedures stipulated in the constitution, specifically what Article 92 stipulated, meaning the need to deliberate in the Council of Ministers if the matter is related to introducing an amendment. On the government’s structure, along with other procedural deficiencies (he did not mention them).
The meeting was attended by the Presbyterian, Parliament Speaker Rashid Ghannouchi, and the Ministers of National Defense, Justice, Economy, Finance and Investment Support, and Health.
In this context, the Tunisian president indicated that some of the proposers in the ministerial reshuffle have issues related to them or have conflict of interest files.
He added that whoever is related to a case cannot take the oath, noting that taking the oath is not a formality, but rather a fundamental one.
In the same context, Saeed expressed his dissatisfaction with the absence of women from the list of proposed ministers, indicating that women are able to assume full responsibilities and are able to give.
On the other hand, the Tunisian Presidency of the Government issued a statement confirming that the Council of Ministers approved in its meeting today a new restructuring of the government (the cabinet reshuffle) by merging some ministries and deleting others.
This statement came in response to Qais Saeed’s statements at the meeting of the National Security Council, in which he rejected the ministerial reshuffle because the cabinet, which is constitutionally empowered to restructure, did not discuss the issue.
The President of the Republic had chosen Hisham El-Mechichi to form the government last July, as he was the “most capable person,” to lift the veto in his face after a short period of time following the escalation of differences between the two men over the government structure.
On January 16, Al-Meshishi announced a cabinet reshuffle that included 11 portfolios.
In a related context, Saeed referred at the beginning of the meeting to the frequency of recent events, the spread of the Corona pandemic, and the large number of protests as a result of disappointment in the economic and social policies that have been followed for decades, as well as the worsening political situation.
Since last Thursday, several governorates and neighborhoods in the capital, Tunis, have witnessed night protests, interspersed with clashes with security men, coinciding with the entry into force of a night curfew, as part of anti-Corona measures, without specifying its duration.