Negociations over a possible political coalition between the Nidaa Tounes, Al Joumhouri, and Al Massar opposition parties began on Saturday, January 19, stated Lazhar Akremi, spokesperson of Nidaa Tounes, to Tunisia Live.
According to the official website of Nidaa Tounes, its founder, Beji Caid Essebsi, met that day with leaders of Al Joumhouri to disscuss a united political front between the three parties.
The meeting was held in Al Joumhouri’s headquarters, and Essebsi was accompanied by Nidaa Tounes’ executive body, including the party’s executive director Ridha Belhaj as well as Lazhar Karoui Chebbi, Mohsen Marzouk, Mondher Belhadj Ali, and Rafi Ben Achour.
“We started discussing the situation of Tunisia and the ways to overcome this transitional period. Even though there is no official document declaring the coalition between the three parties yet, we are working to find a way to establish a solid alliance,” said Akremi.
While both Al Massar and Al Joumhouri are in discussions to potentially join Nidaa Tounes, the Popular Front party refused to enter into such a coalition, prefering to partake in the next elections with their own candidates, Hamma Hammami, spokesperson of the Popular Front, told Tunisian radio Mosaique FM.
“We do not want to take part of the coalition, because there were no clear political programs. The three parties discussed the country’s situation but did not determine their programs to deal with social and economic issues and leave the crisis,” explained Fathi El-Latif, a National Constituent Assembly member affiliated with the Popular Front.
The three parties have left out in their talks critical issues, such as debt forgiveness from abroad, regional development, the date of the upcoming elections, and the constitutional draft’s completion, according to El-Latif.