Tunisia has been facing a strong autocratic drift since 25 July 2021 and the use of article 80 of the Constitution by President Kaïs Saïed allowing him, according to his interpretation, to hold full powers. Since then, no roadmap has been transmitted, the Parliament is still frozen, and the President acts alone without any dialogue with state structures, political parties or civil society actors.

On 22 September 2021, Kaïs Saïed reinforced the concentration of powers by promulgating a so-called “emergency decree” which gives him the right to legislate by decree, without time limit, his prerogatives replacing those of the government and the parliament. He also expressed his wish to revise the Constitution with the help of a “group of experts” without giving further details.

In this context, together with other Tunisian and international actors, such as UGTT, ATFD, Human Rights Watch or Euromed Rights, NOVACT strongly denounces this decision and expresses its deepest concerns for the respect of the rule of law, human rights and the role played by civil society since the 2011 revolution. As expressed by NOVACT’s partners on the ground, the urgent need is for

  • the formation of a government
  • the ratification of a roadmap in consultation with the social and political partners of the country
  • the establishment of constitutional structures that allow amendments
  • maintaining a dialogue and a participatory approach with civil society organisations the respect of the promises made to the social partners the day after 25 July

NOVACT is extremely concerned about the danger this situation poses to fundamental freedoms, human rights and democracy.

NOVACT supports the initiative of the women’s movements to propose a common roadmap to ensure women’s rights and equality in the political agenda. To find the details of the measures, please click here:

NOVACT will continue to denounce abuses of power, defend the rule of law and stand by our partners in Tunisia to propose a non-violent and human rights-respecting way out of the crisis.

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