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Tebboune Vows to Implement Electoral Reforms, Separation of Powers Doctrine

Tebboune Vows to Implement Electoral Reforms, Separation of Powers Doctrine

Saturday, 8 February, 2020 - 10:45
Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune during a swearing-in ceremony in Algiers, Algeria (File photo: Reuters)

Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune said the country's recent constitutional amendments aim to build the new republic on a strong basis and establish true democracy based on the separation of powers and the protection of rights and freedom of citizens.

This came in a letter sent by Tebboune and read by Minister Adviser to Communication and spokesman Belaid Mohand Oussaid at the opening of the International Forum of Lawyers on the legal and judicial protection of investment.

In his message, the president indicated that the new amendments will protect the country from corruption and authoritarian deviation and make the peaceful transfer of power a tangible reality.

Tebboune asserted that the constitutional amendment project will address the issue of separation and balance of powers, and the introduction of comprehensive reform in the justice system to ensure judiciary independence.

He also indicated that the amendment seeks to enhance mechanisms that prevent corruption and combat it permanently and continuously, so that “we can establish a sound environment from the scourge of corruption, incubating honest competition driven by a spirit of responsibility and patriotism, and fortified with morals and virtuous values.”

Meanwhile, the new Algerian government, which is facing a serious political and economic crisis, presented the outlines of its ‘plan of action’ aimed at economic recovery, affected by the drop in oil prices.

A statement issued after an extraordinary meeting, chaired by Tebboune, said that the action plan focuses on achieving “the economic renewal based on food security, energy transition and the digital economy.”

The government stressed the need for conducting a “deep review of the governance modes, elaborating new rules in order to successfully execute development policies and creating an interactive dynamic,” reported the Algerian News Agency.

Based on its action plan, the government seeks to set up a national investment map through the opening of new spaces dedicated to industrial land, particularly the Haut Plateaus and the South region.

The government's plan also includes reforming the electoral system, highly criticized by the opposition. The government will work to “guarantee freedom of assembly, peaceful demonstration, and endorse the media in the exercise of their activity.”

Meanwhile, the popular movement marched in various cities rejecting the new system and chanting slogans accusing the president of being one of former President Abdelaziz Bouteflika's men. They also criticized poor media coverage of the protests, blaming pressure from authorities.

The protesters condemned the country's judiciary, saying it submits to orders and dictations given over the phone to imprison demonstrators.

Hundreds took to the streets and squares of the capital determined to pressure the new authority to approve their demands, namely the release of dozens of detainees, some of whom are in pretrial detention, while others serve terms ranging between 6 and 18 months. Many demonstrators are also still waiting for their trial.

Demonstrators in the capital and the big cities in the east and west held pictures of the most famous political detainees, including journalist and activist Fodil Boumala, head of the Youth Action Rally Abdelwahab Farsaoui, and political activist Karim Tabbou.

Last week, Algiers court released prominent Hirak activist, Samir Belarbi, who was arrested on September 16 for “weakening the morale of the army”.

One of the activists’ lawyers, Abdelghani Badi, announced Friday that activist Islam Tabouche was arrested in Setif, east of the country.

Badi posted on his Facebook page that Tabouche contacted him a few days earlier about being subjected to security harassment.

The new authority faces sharp criticism on the issue of demonstrations and detainees, especially that Tebboune vowed on several occasions to put an end to harassment against protests. However, security forces continue to arrest demonstrators and ban protests.

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