The head of the advisory body charged with drafting Tunisia’s new constitution, said that the classic theory of differentiating power will be adapted in a different way in a new system of government in which the president is at a higher rank than the constitutional structures, along with a “governing body” that has the authority to initiate rather than the executive authority.
Dean of the Faculty of Law and retired professor of constitutional law, Sadiq Belaid, explained that the advisory body is working on a different adaptation of the theory developed by the French philosopher in the eighteenth century, at a time when the absolute monarchy was prevalent in Europe.
“Montesquieu offered nothing more than a theoretical separation of powers,” Belaid said.
A new constitution is being prepared in Tunisia for submission to a referendum on July 25th.
According to the plans presented by Belaid in his interview on state television, a “governance body” will be assigned in the new constitution to replace the executive authority (the government) and it will be entrusted with managing economic issues exclusively, and this body will be given the power to initiate and revitalize the economy, while the parliament’s role will be limited to legislation.
Belaid said, “This dimension will be of great importance in the new constitution, in addition to social, cultural and environmental issues… The starting point is economics, not politics… We will turn the picture around because the country’s problem is economic and social.”
On the other hand, the President of the Republic in the new system of government will have powers parallel to the governing body and will take over the authority to appoint the “head of the governing body” and not the winning party in the elections.
The National Consultative Commission for a New Republic is tasked with proposing a new draft constitution to the President, and other bodies are working to discuss proposals on economic and social issues.
Belaid assumes the role of general coordinator within the advisory body and the national dialogue, which President Kais Saied called for.
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