Tunisia – Women protest outside the Independent High Authority for Elections
Location: Tunis – Tunisia
Source: A24 in Tunisia
Restrictions: A24 subscribers
Tunisian women organized a protest outside the headquarters of the Independent High Authority for Elections in Tunis, against the electoral law and electoral process to be held next December.
Protesters stated that the electoral law excluded women, youth and people with disabilities by not stipulating participation and parity in electoral law.
Neila Zoghlami, president of the Tunisian Association of Democratic Women, explained in an interview with A24 that electoral law’s exclusion of women and youth means their rights, freedoms and gains are renounced.
Mohamed Jelassi, head of the Tunisian Journalists Syndicate, who participated in the protest, expressed in an interview with A24 his support for the demands of women with regards to the right to be present in parliamentary and representative assemblies through a law that allows them to, as well as the adoption of parity, which requires candidates to include women and men. He said this law is unfair to Tunisian women who have contributed immense efforts to their personal, political and professional lives.
– Soundbite (Neila Zoghlami – President of the Tunisian Association of Democratic Women)
“Today, we, as feminists, decided to defend the right of women to be in positions of political decision, as well as youth and people with disabilities. The law excluded them, as it is a unilateral law that does not take parity into account, and renounces their rights, freedoms and gains, We are here to raise our voices in protest to defend our rights and gains. We will not let political will control us, this is our country, and we fought for those gains.”
– Soundbite (Basma Al-Sousi – Vice President of the Ibsar Association for the blind and visually impaired):
“I am here to say no to those who wish to manipulate women’s voices, especially people with disabilities, and to a decree that asks women to collect 400 recommendations, which is unfair to those who are different. If I were in a wheelchair, I would not be able to enter most of institutions, not to mention that whoever has a disability will not receive any votes. Since there no law to represent us, I am here to say that as a Tunisian woman, I support women’s rights. I am against this law, as it would lead to retrograding”
– Soundbite (Mohamed Yassin Jelassi – Head of the Tunisian Journalists Syndicate):
“I am here today to express support of Journalists Syndicate for our fellows in the feminist movement fighting for their right to be present in parliamentary and representative assemblies with a law that allows them to, through the adoption of parity, which requires candidates to include women and men. However, electoral law No. 55 excludes women, stipulating they can only recommend a candidate but not be one. The law does not stipulate women should be present in next parliamentary assembly. There is no parity, which we believe is unfair to Tunisian women who have contributed immense efforts in their personal, political and professional lives. Therefore, the law is not in line with what Tunisia has achieved for women’s rights. Presence of women in politics is vital and beneficial.”