Politics, Africa

New Tunisian government sworn in

Najla Bouden named country’s first female prime minister in late September

11.10.2021 - Update : 11.10.2021
New Tunisian government sworn in

TUNIS, Tunisia

Tunisia’s new Cabinet was sworn in on Monday, two weeks after Najla Bouden was appointed the country’s first female prime minister.

The swearing-in ceremony took place at the Presidential Palace of Carthage.

On Sep. 29, President Kais Saied appointed Bouden as the country’s new prime minister, two months after assuming executive authority.

In an earlier Facebook posting, the presidency said that Saied had approved the new government selected by Bouden.

Eight out of the new government's 23 ministerial portfolios were given to women, according to the same source.

The lineup saw Tawfiq Sharafeddine, the former coordinator of Saied’s presidential election campaign in Sousse, returning to his post as interior minister after he was dismissed by former Prime Minister Hichem Mechichi on Jan. 5.

Mechichi did not reveal the reasons for dismissing Sharafeddine at the time, but media reports suggested that he was sacked for removing a number of ministry officials from their positions without consulting the premier.

The new Cabinet also saw the creation of a ministerial portfolio of employment and vocational training.

In a televised speech following the government formation, Bouden said her government is committed to “improving services and citizens' living conditions” and restoring the international community's confidence in the North African country.

On July 25, Saied ousted the government, suspended parliament, and assumed executive authority. While he insists that his "exceptional measures" are meant to "save" the country, critics accuse him of orchestrating a coup.

Tunisia has been seen as the only country that succeeded in carrying out a democratic transition among Arab countries which witnessed popular revolutions toppling ruling regimes, including Egypt, Libya, and Yemen.

*Writing by Ibrahim Mukhtar in Ankara

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