Tunisia’s president wants corrupt tycoons to fund poor regions

0
46
TUNIS, TUNISIA - OCTOBER 13: Tunisian President Kais Saied talks to media after the first exit poll in presidential runoff vote (Photo by Thierry Monasse/Getty Images)

Tunisia’s president is proposing that hundreds of tycoons suspected of embezzlement reach a deal with the state to finance public hospitals, schools and development projects in poor regions to avoid convictions.

President Kais Saied seized new political powers this week and is trying to tackle the corruption and tax evasion that have long plagued the economy, notably in the lucrative phosphate sector and food trading.

Saied is also seeking to counter accusations that his surprise decision to fire the prime minister and suspend parliament amounts to a coup. He insisted Wednesday on the “provisional” nature of the move and on his attachment to the freedoms and rights guaranteed in the Tunisian Constitution, created after protesters overthrew a dictator in 2011. The country is considered the only democratic success story resulting from the Arab Spring uprisings that year.

Tunisia’s president is proposing that hundreds of tycoons suspected of embezzlement reach a deal with the state to finance public hospitals, schools and development projects in poor regions to avoid convictions.

President Kais Saied seized new political powers this week and is trying to tackle the corruption and tax evasion that have long plagued the economy, notably in the lucrative phosphate sector and food trading.

Saied is also seeking to counter accusations that his surprise decision to fire the prime minister and suspend parliament amounts to a coup. He insisted Wednesday on the “provisional” nature of the move and on his attachment to the freedoms and rights guaranteed in the Tunisian Constitution, created after protesters overthrew a dictator in 2011. The country is considered the only democratic success story resulting from the Arab Spring uprisings that year.

Leave a Reply