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Tunisia MPs Pressure Speaker to Resign

Tunisia MPs Pressure Speaker to Resign

Monday, 13 January, 2020 - 10:30
Tunisia's President Kais Saied receives Ennahdha leader and parliament speaker Rached Ghannouchi at the presidential palace in Tunis, November 15. (Tunisian Presidency via AFP)

Several Tunisian parties have called on Speaker Rached Ghannouchi to resign or face the possibility of a no-confidence vote after they accused him of bias at last week’s session on granting confidence to Habib Jemli’s government.

Free Destourian Party launched a petition in an attempt to withdraw lawmakers’ confidence from Ghannouchi, who also chairs Ennahda Movement.

The party leader, Abir Moussi, confirmed that her 17-member bloc signed the petition and hoped it would get 73 more votes for it to be adopted.

Head of Mashrouu Tounes movement Mohsen Marzouk criticized Ghannouchi and urged him to voluntarily resign.

Marzouk questioned Ghannouchi’s ability to play a neutral role in the coming period, which will witness a vote on the government that will be proposed by President Kais Saied in line with the constitution.

He also strongly criticized Ghannouchi's visit to Turkey to meet its president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, a day after the government failed to receive parliament’s vote of confidence, accusing him of receiving orders from Turkey.

Khalil al-Baroumi, a top official at Ennahda’s media office, said Ghannouchi visited Turkey in his personal and partisan capacity, and not as a speaker of parliament. He explained that the visit was predetermined and that Ghannouchi has a “special relationship” with Erdogan.

Observers believe that Abir Moussi and a number of left-wing parties opposed to political Islam, rely on Qalb Tounes party, led by Nabil Karoui, to thwart Ennahda’s efforts to control power.

In addition, the Tayyar Chaabi movement considered government’s failure to win the confidence vote would help Tunisia and its people avoid falling victim to the “Brotherhood’s project”.

The nationalist party called on the political forces to launch urgent dialogue on a vision to resolve political, economic, and security problems after the proposed government’s collapse.

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