A year ahead of legislative and presidential elections, Tunisian politics appears to be in a period of intense upheaval. Prime Minister Youssef Chahed’s position has been wavering for months. Meanwhile, the economic malaise of the population deepens by the day.
- In a coalition government, Ennahda is demonstrating what acceptable religious conservatism might look like
- Ennahda. It translates as the reawakening or the rebirth in English. And it is the word upon which the future of the new Tunisia could rest, as it searches for its way after January’s revolution. Ennahda is also the name of the party most likely to have success in the October 23rd elections for the Constituent Assembly. Outlawed until last March, the Mouvement de la tendance islamique, as it was called until 1989, has returned to the political stage in grand style and is based in the financial district of Montplaisir in Tunis.
- There are over a hundred political parties in Tunisia, a clear contrast to Ben Ali’s single-party rule. There will be 105 political parties in Tunisia’s general election on October 23rd and 1,742 electoral lists of which there are about 1,600 in Tunisia and slightly over a hundred for Tunisians overseas. Slightly more than half, 845, were deposited by real parties and 678 by independent groups or minor and less well-organized formations. All this for 3.8 million potential voters, those who regularly register at the polling stations and who will vote in the 27 voting precincts, added to this are six overseas constituencies.