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Marzouki to Tunisian Ennahda: join with us ‘to destroy the monster’

Tunisia’s former president Moncef Marzouki [file photo]
Tunisia’s former president Moncef Marzouki [file photo]

The former Tunisian President Moncef Marzouki called on Ennahda Movement to agree with him and end its old agreement with Nidaa Tounes in preparation for the upcoming general elections, urging the movement to stand by him to destroy together “the monster” before it destroys them.

Marzouki was speaking on Sunday at a popular conference in the southern city of Sfax in commemoration of the fifth anniversary of the ratification of Tunisia’s new constitution, on 27 January 2014.

Marzouki addressed Ennahda movement (68 seats in the parliament out of a total of 217 seats) saying: “To my friends in Ennahda movement, what makes you allied to the party with which you agree?”

He added: “You are only feeding a monster today, which will eat you till the last bite tomorrow.” Marzouki went on: “I advise my friends in Ennahda movement to stand by us to destroy the monster before it destroys us.”

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Marzouki insisted that this agreement between Nidaa Tounes and Ennahda leaves Tunisians without a horizon. “I say to Tunisians: the horizon is 2019 (the upcoming presidential and legislative elections) and change is within the democratic system and by the masses of citizens,” he asserted.

He continued: “To my leftist friends, your real enemy is poverty, not Islam and Islamists.”

Regarding the controversy in the country about France’s exploitation of natural resources in Tunisia, Marzouki argued: “Natural wealth belongs to the Tunisian people, and we would regain this wealth from the corruption and looting lobbies.”

In mid-March 2018, the Truth and Dignity Commission (constitutional/independent) published documents related to agreements concluded in 1955 that allow France to exploit the underground resources of oil, salt, water and phosphates, which remain valid until today.

In another context, Marzouki criticised the bill, which Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi made to the Parliament regarding gender equality in inheritance. He declared: “I am with the sanctities of the people, not with the sanctities of Bochra  Belhaj Hmida,” referring to the president of the Presidential Committee, who oversaw the preparation of the bill.

READ: Tunisia dinar nearing lowest level due to instability

Marzouki concluded: “In the future, my party (Al-Irada – four MPs) will focus on four important points in Tunisia: development, education, the political system and climate change.”

Tunisia witnessed the establishment of Tahya Tounes party, close to the Head of the Government Youssef Chahed, in preparation for the legislative and presidential elections scheduled for next autumn.

Observers said that Chahed stands behind the establishment of the party, following a dispute between him and the Executive Director of Nidaa Tounes, Hafez Caid Essebsi, the son of the President of the Republic Beji Caid Essebsi.

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