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Tunisians warned: If Saied's reforms fail, Ghannouchi will be President

A group of people gather outside Municipal Theater to protest Tunisian President Kais Saied in Tunis, Tunisia on May 15, 2022. [Yassine Gaidi - Anadolu Agency]
A group of people gather outside Municipal Theater to protest against Tunisian President Kais Saied in Tunis, Tunisia on May 15, 2022. [Yassine Gaidi - Anadolu Agency]

The Head of the Tunisian Bar Association and one of the members of the authority entrusted to draft the new Constitution received great criticism after he warned Tunisians of the possibility that the Speaker of the Tunisian dissolved Parliament, Rached Ghannouchi, to assume power in case the referendum on the new Constitution fails.

While he was hosted by one of the local channels, the Head of the Bar Association, Ibrahim Bouderbala, called on Tunisians to vote with "yes" for the new Constitution, warning: "If the referendum on the Constitution fails, the initiator will leave (in reference to the resignation of President Kais Saied), and we will return to the period before 25 July, and to the 2014 Constitution. So, the Parliament will be reactivated, and Ghannouchi will become President of the Republic."

Because of this statement, Bouderbala was subjected to widespread criticism on social media platforms. Opposed activists considered that he is using a "vile" propaganda method to pressure the hesitant Tunisians and those who have not yet determined their position on President Saied's Constitution and warn them of the "consequences" of the return of the Parliament and the failure of Saied's rule.

The Facebook page of "Guardians of the Tunisian Revolution" posted: From now, consider it as a failed referendum like the online consultation, and Ghannouchi is the interim president of the country, God willing, as stipulated in the legitimate Constitution of the Tunisian Republic that was voted on in 2014."

One of the activists added: "Rest assured, Ghannouchi does not seek to rule." He continued: "If Ghannouchi accepts to rule Tunisia for only six months, you will find a big difference in the country's foreign relations", in reference to the repeated criticism against Saied due to his "failure" in the international relations file.

READ: Tunisia: 24 parties will take part in constitutional referendum campaign

Another activist continued: "After the end of his first role in the referendum, the Head of the Bar Association, Ibrahim Bouderbala, began a malicious tactic to intimidate the people and direct them to contribute to succeeding the referendum. O history, write the position of the Tunisian Bar Association represented by its Head. And write also the position of Kais Saied before he became President when he said: 'The referendum is a type of dictatorship'."

Bouderbala's statements come days after similar statements by Amin Mahfouz, a constitutional expert and member of the consultative authority assigned with preparing a new Constitution, in which he affirmed that Tunisians' rejection of the new Constitution would lead to the resumption of the frozen Constitution and the return of the dissolved Parliament to work.

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