By Farah Samti | Apr 29 2013Constitution , criticism , Ettakatol , Lobna Jribi , National Constituent Assembly ,
A statement released Saturday under the name of the National Constituent Assembly (NCA) expressed dissatisfaction and surprise over recent criticism of Tunisia’s draft constitution from within and outside the assembly. It was not clear which NCA members contributed to the press release.
The statement described the criticism as a part of a “distortion campaign” that does not recognize the NCA’s efforts to draft a constitution and the historical value of its mission.
It also stated that criticism does not reflect the “true will of the people” and asserts that such voices will not prevent “representatives of the people” from continuing to build Tunisian institutions.
The statement called on media outlets not to exaggerate the situation surrounding the drafting of the constitution, but rather to give their objective analysis.
Lobna Jribi, an NCA representative of the Ettakatol party, which is part of the ruling coalition, told Tunisia Live that the press release did not denounce criticism, but only insults.
“We are open to any objective criticism. However, certain statements lacked objectivity and I find them counter-productive,” she said.
Jribi explained that focusing on the positive aspects of the third draft of the constitution, which is “better than the second one,” is important in order to maintain these points and improve the rest of the document. She also called on political parties to give priority to the well-being of future generations instead of their political agendas.
After the final draft of the constitution was issued on April 23, opposition leaders and representatives have protested changes made by the parliamentary committee charged with drafting the constitution, the Joint Committee for Coordination and Drafting. The protests focus on articles related to the right t0 strike and freedom of expression, which critics have asserted the committee changed without having the authority to do so.