13 February 2013 5:14 pm | | 3

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Prime Minister Jebali met Tuesday with the “Council of Elders” (Courtesy of PM Hamadi Jebali’s Facebook page)

A “Council of Elders” advised Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali to create a national unity government instead of technocratic one during a meeting held Tuesday.

Abou Yaareb Marzouki, an Ennahdha-affiliated member of the National Constituent Assembly (NCA) and one of those in attendance, stated that the 16 Council members were requested to give their opinions regarding the national situation and to provide advice.

Marzouki told Tunisia Live that the Council advised Jebali not to create a government at the expense of the current one, but to form a governing body that would enhance the legitimacy of current institutions by being more inclusive of different political viewpoints.

“A national unity government is more suitable for the country’s situation, because a technocratic government is only useful to solve technical problems,” Marzouki said. “However, Tunisia needs a national unity government to solve its political problems.”

Tunisian news agency TAP reported that the Council of Elders will not replace any existing authorities or institutions.

According to the same source, members of the Council criticized the slow pace of the NCA’s work and agreed that the body had plunged into legislative and political issues, instead of focusing on drafting a new constitution and enacting an electoral law.

Representatives from opposition party Al-Joumhouri criticized the composition of the Council.

Maya Jeribi, General Secretary of Al-Joumhouri, expressed her disapproval of the Council composition yesterday. She told Mosaique FM she believes the 16 members will not be efficient because most of them belong to the state’s executive body.

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Comments (3)

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  1. Truthteller says:

    Who are “The Elders” and why are they not identified by name and party affiliation? There appear to be numerous parallel advisory bodies that want to influence and end up impeding the decision-making process. When I first read this, the “Council of Elders” reminded me of the loya jirga (Afghanistan tribal consensus process).

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