Flag of Tunisia

Tunisia Celebrates Independence Day March 20, 2023

By Joy Osiagwu

Tunisia is one of the countries in the Mediterranean described as a vital player in the region as a result of its prominent location in the center of North Africa, close to important shipping routes. With a population of 12,160,000 and an area of 163,610 sq km, the nation is made up of a coastal area, mountains, and a hilly steppe. The capital city is Tunis and the languages spoken are Arabic and French. The nation has some of the largest phosphate and natural gas reserves on the African Continent with a good number of oil reserves. It is also part of the Maghreb area in North Africa. Some of the significant economic activities in the region are agriculture, Tourism, and the export of petroleum and phosphates.

France ended its rule over the country in 1956 and Habib Bourguiba led the nation for three decades. He was known as an advocate for reforms that supported the emancipation of women. When France granted Morocco autonomy in 1955, the move created a good avenue for Tunisia’s independence. On March 20, 1956, Tunisia got independence from France under the leadership of Habib Bourguiba.

Habib Bourguiba.

Current Governance Structure

Tunisia operates a unitary semi-presidential representative democratic republic.

The President serves as the head of state while the Prime minister serves as the head of government. The system also has a unicameral legislature and a court structure dominated by French civil law. His Excellency, Kais Saied is the President of the country.

His Excellency, Kais Saied, President of Tunisia. (Photo credit: Getty Images)

Professor Najla Bouden is the Tunisian Prime Minister and the first female to hold the position in both Tunisia and the Arab world. She assumed the position on 11 October 2021.

Professor Najla Bouden is the Tunisian Prime Minister (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Trending News in Tunisia

The Human Rights Watch (HRW), an international non – governmental organization with its head office in New York has intensified demands for the Tunisia government to reinstate the judges and prosecutors arbitrarily relieved of their jobs by the President, Kais Saied.

The demand was contained in the watchdog’s latest report published on Monday, February 27. The insistence came on the heels of the refusal to reinstate the 49 magistrates, despite an administrative court order on August 9, 2022, urging the government to reinstate them.

According to the Human Rights Watch report, the Justice Minister announced that the government is set to prepare criminal cases against the judges and prosecutors related to “financial, economic, and terrorist crime”.  In line with the principles and guidelines on the right to a fair trial and legal assistance in Africa, adopted by the African Commission in 2005 as regards human and people’s rights, the judges are entitled to fair hearings and representation by a legal entity.

Tunisia has an Embassy in Ottawa located at 515 R. O’Connor St. Ottawa, ON K1S 3P8.

Phone: 613 237 0330