Talk:President of Tunisia
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Election (translation draft --I'll translate it (talk) 11:19, 13 May 2011 (UTC))
Latest election
Main article: Tunisian general election, 2009
e • d
 Summary of the 25 October 2009 Tunisianpresidential election results
Zine El Abidine Ben AliConstitutional Democratic Rally4,238,71189.62
Mohamed BouchihaPopular Unity Party236,9555.01
Ahmed InoubliUnionist Democratic Union179,7263.80
Ahmed BrahimEttajdid Movement74,2571.57
Valid votes4,729,64999.84
Blank or invalid votes7,7180.16
Voter turnout89.45
Source: POGAR, (in French) Business News
Electoral history
Presidents of the Republic of Tunisia
#NameImageBorn-DiedTerm startTerm endPolitical Party
1Habib Bourguiba
1903-200025 July 19577 November 1987Neo Destour Party (1957-1964)
Socialist Destourian Party (1964-1987)
2Zine El Abidine Ben Ali
1936-7 November 198714 January 2011Socialist Destourian Party (1987-1988)
Constitutional Democratic Rally (1988-2011)
Mohamed Ghannouchi (acting)
1941-14 January 201115 January 2011Constitutional Democratic Rally
Fouad Mebazaa (acting)
1933-15 January 2011IncumbentConstitutional Democratic Rally (2011)
Independent (2011-)
The first presidential and legislative elections were held on November 8, 1959.[1]. Since then the two polls have always been held on the same day, always a Sunday[1].
The candidacy of Bourguiba, who benefited from his image as an independence fighter, was uncontested in the first poll. It remained that way through to the election of 1974, his share of the vote increasing each year, from 91% in 1959 to 99.85% in 1974[1]. It was not until September 10, 1974 that a candidate other than the incumbent president would apply to contest an election. Chedly Zouiten, president of the Tunisian Junior Economic Chamber, announced his run for president, however his own organisation condemned his decision[2] and his candidature was rejected by an ad hoc electoral commission[2]. The 1974 election would be the last poll for 20 years, as Bourguiba was proclaimed "president for life" in 1975.
Outgoing Tunisian Human Rights League president Moncef Marzouki applied to run against Ben Ali, in 1994, however he failed to gather enough signatures to be eligible. He was later imprisoned[3] and had his passport cancelled[4]. It was only after the passing of constitutional amendments and the relaxing of Article 40 of the constitution that non-incumbent candidates were able to contest elections in 1999, 2004 and 2009.
General election results since 1959
ElectionCandidateResultPolitical party
8 November1959[1]Habib Bourguiba91 %Neo Destour
8 November1964[5]Habib Bourguiba96 %Socialist Destourian Party (PSD)
2 November1969[6]Habib Bourguiba99.76 %PSD
3 November1974[1][7]Habib Bourguiba99.85 %PSD
2 April1989[1]Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali99.27 %Constitutional Democratic Rally (RCD)
20 March1994[3]Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali99.91 %[8]RCD
24 October 1999[1][9]Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali99.45 %[10]RCD
Mohamed Belhaj Amor0.31 %Party of People's Unity (PUP)
Abderrahmane Tlili0.23 %Unionist Democratic Union (UDU)
24 October 2004[11]Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali94.49 %RCD
Mohamed Bouchiha3.78 %PUP
Mohamed Ali Halouani0.95 %Movement Ettajdid
Mounir Béji0.79 %Social Liberal Party (PSL)
25 October 2009[12]Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali89.62 %RCD
Mohamed Bouchiha5.01 %PUP
Ahmed Inoubli3.80 %UDU
Ahmed Brahim1.57 %Movement Ettajdid
  1. ^ a b c d e f g (in French) Samir Gharbi, « Radiographie d’une élection », Jeune Afrique, 2 novembre 1999
  2. ^ a b
  3. ^ a b Michel Camau et Vincent Geisser, Habib Bourguiba. La trace et l’héritage, éd. Karthala, Paris, 2004, p. 241 ISBN 2845865066
  4. ^ (in French) Dominique Lagarde, « Pluralisme à la tunisienne », L’Express, 21 octobre 1999
  5. ^ (in French) Habib Bourguiba sur Le Grand Larousse Encyclopédique
  6. ^ Centre d’études nord africaines, Annuaire de l’Afrique du Nord, éd. Université du Michigan/Centre national de la recherche scientifique, 1969, vol. 8, p. 389
  7. ^ Proclamé président à vie par la Chambre des députés le 18 mars 1975, cette mesure est annulée le 25 juillet 1988 (après son éviction).
  8. ^ (in French) Encarta avance le chiffre de 99,80 %.
  9. ^ (in English) Anthony H. Cordesman, A Tragedy of Arms. Military and Security Developments in the Maghreb, éd. Greenwood Publishing Group, 2002, p. 250 ISBN 0275969363
  10. ^ (in French) Encarta avance le chiffre de 99,44 % et Le Canard enchaîné n°4581 (« Carthage de ses artères », 13 août 2008, p. 8) celui de 99,40 %.
  11. ^ (in French) Résultats de l’élection présidentielle de 2004 (Présidence de la République tunisienne)
  12. ^ (in French) Le président Ben Ali remporte l’élection présidentielle 2009 avec 89,62 % (Élections 2009)
Term in office (translation draft --I'll translate it (talk) 01:09, 14 May 2011 (UTC))
The president-elect takes the following oath of office before a joint sitting of the Chamber of Deputies and the Chamber of Councillors:

Je jure par Dieu Tout-puissant de sauvegarder l’indépendance de la patrie et l’intégrité de son territoire, de respecter la constitution du pays et sa législation et de veiller scrupuleusement sur les intérêts de la nation[1].

I swear by Almighty God to safeguard the independence of the fatherland and its territorial integrity, to respect its constitution and to dutifully watch over its national interests.
Term limit
The president is elected by universal suffrage for a term of five years in a free, direct and secret ballot, requiring an absolute majority of votes to win[1]. There is no limit to the number of terms he or she can serve[1]. In the past, however, the president was limited to four consecutive terms by the 1959 constitution.
Hédi Nouira
In 1974, after having served four terms, Habib Bourguiba declared that he wanted to become president for life. His wish approved by the Ninth Congress of the Socialist Destourian Party, held in September 1974, the parliament voted on March 18, 1975 to adopt constitutional amendment n°75-13 which modified paragraph 2 of Article 40 of the constitution. The parliament stated that the amendment was adopted:

à titre exceptionnel et en considération des services éminents rendus par le Combattant suprême Habib Bourguiba au peuple tunisien qu’il a libéré du joug du colonialisme et dont il a fait une nation moderne et jouissant de la plénitude de sa souveraineté[2].

as an exception, and taking into consideration the distinguished service rendered by the Supreme Fighter Habib Bourguiba to the Tunisian people whom he liberated from the yoke of colonialism and of whom he formed a modern nation enjoying full sovereignty over itself.
Article 51 (currently Article 57) was also amended to state that the powers of the president were to be assumed by the prime minister in the case that the office was vacant[3]. In 1976, Prime Minister Hédi Nouira changed paragraph 3 of Article 39 of the constitution — which was not repealed by the 1975 vote, only suspended — to state that the president's term was unlimited.
When Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali became president, he promised to restore power to the country's institutions, in line with "the republican ideal"[4]. Articles 40 and 57 of the constitution were amended on July 25, 1988, limiting the number of terms of any given president to three. However, like Bourguiba, when Ben Ali was no longer eligible to hold office the constitution was changed. Under the May 26, 2002 amendment, a president was allowed unlimited terms and the maximum allowed age for a candidate was extended from 70 to 75 years[5]. A president's term was now limited only by his or her life expectancy[6]. The country's opposition criticized the move, likening it to a "burial for the republic"[7]. Activist Sadri Khiari called it a "putsch in disguise"[8].
  1. ^ a b c
  2. ^ (in French) Rafâa Ben Achour, « La succession de Bourguiba », Les figures du politique en Afrique. Des pouvoirs hérités aux pouvoirs élus, éd. Codesria/Karthala, Paris, 2000, p. 230
  3. ^ (in French) Élections présidentielles en Tunisie (Présidence de la République tunisienne)
  4. ^ (in French) Déclaration du 7 novembre 1987 (Tunisie Info)
  5. ^ Jean-Pierre Tuquoi, « En Tunisie, un référendum constitutionnel ouvre la voie à la réélection de M. Ben Ali », Le Monde, 16 mai 2002
  6. ^ (in French) Hamadi Redissi, « Qu’est-ce qu’une tyrannie élective ? », Jura Gentium, 2002
  7. ^ Sabine Lavorel, Les constitutions arabes et l’islam, éd. Presses de l’Université du Québec, Sainte-Foy, 2004 ISBN 2760513335
  8. ^ Florence Beaugé, « L’opposant Sadri Khiari qualifie de « putsch masqué » la réforme constitutionnelle en cours en Tunisie », Le Monde, 23 mai 2002
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