Tunisian Commission Sets Presidential, Parliamentary Elections Dates
Tunisia’s Independent High Authority for Elections announced Thursday that presidential elections in the country will be held in November and parliamentary polls will be held in October.
Newly elected head of the Authority, Nabil Baffoun, revealed that the elections dates will not differ much from 2014, saying that they will be held ten days apart at most.
Baffoun was elected by parliament to his post on Wednesday to succeed Mohamed Tlili al-Mansri, who had resigned in July.
The elections would be the second since Tunisia’s adoption of a new constitution in 2014 and third since the ouster of former President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali in 2011.
The electoral authority will have the task of registering some 2 to 3 million unregistered Tunisians out of a total of 8 million eligible voters.
Baffoun stressed that the authority will work on providing all necessary conditions to hold “transparent” presidential and parliamentary elections, saying that he is not affiliated to any political party and that all members of the authority work independently.
The authority will kick off in March major campaigns to register voters and motivate the youth to take part in the elections in order to raise voter turnout and avoid boycotts.
The authority has so far started preparing electoral lists and taken arrangements for candidates to announce their nominations.
Meanwhile, civil society activists, academics and intellectuals demanded that Tunisia’s electoral system be amended, explaining that it was not longer suitable for the election of a parliament.
They proposed the adoption of an electoral system that relies on two phases of voting, which would ensure the election of a “clear majority that would guarantee the greatest political stability.”|