The “I Watch” organization considered that the President of the Republic and the Electoral Commission are “not ready for the referendum scheduled for July 25, 2022”, in light of the observations made by the Commission’s executive management and the deliberations of its members, headed by Farouk Bouaskar.
The organization warned, in a statement today, Saturday, of the difficulty of registering voters, “due to the lack of time,” noting that the executive management of the authority confirmed that the number of new registered voters will not exceed the ceiling of 70,000 voters during the voter registration period, which will extend from May 27 to June 5, 2022. This will exclude about two million Tunisians from registering, according to the head of the commission.
“I Watch” also drew attention to “the impossibility of respecting the legal deadlines for major public deals, especially with regard to sensitization and awareness campaigns”, warning of the possibility of the President of the Republic resorting to enacting exceptional measures applicable to public requests, as was approved in connection with the organization of the summit. 18 for the Francophonie.
The organization wondered how the commission would deal with the issue of distributing a grant to finance the referendum campaign for the benefit of the participating parliamentary parties, as stipulated in the basic law related to elections and the referendum, “in the absence of the House of Representatives and the absence of parliamentary parties,” noting “the impossibility of inviting voters by a presidential order to which a project is attached to it.” The text of the referendum, “especially since the President of the Republic has not yet announced the composition of the committee that will prepare draft amendments related to political reforms,” according to the text of the statement.
And it considered that the deadlines for assigning and training the election authority’s staff are “unreasonable” (only 9 days), compared to the size of the responsibilities that will be placed on these agents, “which would open the door for assignment on the basis of loyalty, lack of competence and the necessary experience.”
“I Watch” renewed its call on the President of the Republic to cancel the referendum, “in view of the difficulties that will result from organizing it on July 25, 2022, both in terms of organizational and in terms of the legal consequences that will result from not respecting the procedures of public deals and what they require of transparency and equal opportunities, or from The political aspect, as it is not excluded that the results of this referendum will be challenged, due to the violations that will be tainted by the exclusion of a good number of citizens who vote,” according to the organization.
It also renewed its call on all components of civil society, to take clear and decisive positions and to join efforts to call for a boycott of the referendum, if it is not reversed, and to thwart any scheme aimed at deceiving the will of the citizens and circumventing the democratic path and “the freedom that the Tunisian people gained through blood and pain.” According to the text of the statement.
The organization said that it “recorded the accusation of one of the new members of the commission’s council, to some of his colleagues, on the grounds of their lack of experience in the electoral field,” calling on the new commission members to declare their gains and interests, as a condition for assuming their duties within the commission.
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