Tunisia’s new government lead by Prime Minister Hichem Mechichi was appointed on Wednesday after winning 134 of the 217 votes in Parliament. Tunisia’s third cabinet in less than a year time consists mainly out of independent technocrats. It has 25 ministers and three secretaries of state.
Mechichi replaces former Prime Minister Elyes Fakhfakh who resigned due to a conflict of interests related to his personal business. There were doubts if he would win the vote of confidence because of the mixed reactions in Parliament. The biggest party, Ennahda first announced that they would not back the proposed government because they preferred a cabinet that reflects the political balance of Parliament. However, they later changed their standpoint and voted confidence in Mechichi’s government.
At the handover ceremony, the new Prime Minister said that he is encouraged to tackle the ongoing economic problems in Tunisia. He added that, even though he acknowledges the achievements made by his predecessors, he is determined to strengthen the army and security services to combat terrorism and crime. Mechichi counts on his cabinet, the President and Parliament to form a unity to improve the situation in the country. In addition, he stated that he would welcome feedback and critique from other national forces.
The European Union welcomed the new government and hopes that this change will lead to political and economic stability in Tunisia. The EU also expressed its willingness to cooperate with Mechichi. The United Nations congratulated the Prime Minister and declared its continuous assistance to implement the 2030 Agenda.