The major political parties in Tunisia are set to hold consultative talks in order to reach an agreement regarding the formation of the government.
Elyes Fakhfakh, who was appointed head of government on 10 January by Tunisian president Qais Said, recently made an announcement stating that he will be initiating consultative sessions between the major political parties in Tunisia in order to agree on steps towards the formation of the government.
The political groups who will be participating in the consultative sessions were invited and informed of the proceedings. The invitations were sent following a rejection by Tunisia’s largest political party, Ennahda, of forming a government that excludes the plethora of major parties involved in Tunisian politics.
A government has not been formed in Tunisia since the parliamentary and presidential elections that took place in September and October 2019. Qais Said, who won those elections, ran as an independent and does not enjoy enough parliamentary support for the formation of a government.
This vacancy within the government was prolonged following the rejection of the government proposed by Habib Jamil, who was the prime minister nominated by Ennahda. Fakhfakh was then granted this responsibility by Said, however he is facing an uphill task to bring together a fractured political arena in order to reach an agreement.
Ennahda has called on Fakhfakh to make sure that the range of political actors in the country are brought to the negotiating table to formulate a plan regarding government formation. Ennahda, the largest party in the country, lost an element of its political influence following the nomination of Fakhfakh.
Around three weeks remain before Fakhfakh is required to present the final make-up of the new government. If the parties fail to reach an agreement by the deadline, there is a possibility that parliament will be dissolved and that parliamentary elections will take place again, with the hope that a majority government will be voted in.
The political elite will nevertheless attempt to avoid the situation of holding elections again, as three months have gone by since the previous elections took place, which themselves were decided after two rounds.