Martyr’s Day Events:
On April 9th, Tunisia witnessed serious police brutality against demonstrators participating in a march on Tunis’ main thoroughfare, Habib Bourguiba Avenue. The Congress for the Republic has responded to this brutality by: a. releasing a statement strongly condemning the excessive use of violence, b. asking assembly president Mustafa Ben Jaafar to call for a special plenary session with the Ministry of Interior, which took place on April 12, c. strongly speaking out against the violence during the special plenary session – secretary general Abderraouf Ayadi and assembly member Samia Abbou both made statements. I also support Ettakatol’s idea of forming a permanent commission within the assembly to investigate the transgressions. An emergency commission has been approved at the April 12th plenary.
Trip to Brussels, Belgium:
On March 20th, I attended a conference in Belgium entitled “Democratic Experience of Tunisia,” along with Kamel Jendoubi (president of the electoral commission, ISIE), and Ennahda and Ettakatol deputies. The conference served as an opportunity to meet with my constituents in Belgium. I met with a group of Tunisians at the European Parliament, wherein we discussed their expectations from the constituent assembly and how they envision the country’s constitution.
Open Governance in Tunisia
As one of the founders of the OpenGovTN taskforce, I have been defending the values of transparency and open governance in both the Constituent Assembly and the Presidency. I am a member of the Tunisian delegation attending the Open Governance Partnership (OGP) conference in Brasilia, Brazil. I will be meeting with Brazilian President Dilma Roussef along with the Secretary of State for the Americas and Asia, Hedi Ben Abbes, to engage Tunisia in open governance practices, and acting as a regional leader in open governance initiatives. Follow my live tweets during the conference @mabmbarek.
I sit on the first constitutional commission (which meets every Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday). The commission is charged with drafting the constitution’s preamble and defining its fundamental principles. In the commission, I am adamant on the the rule of law being the foundation of an equal, well-represented society that treats all citizens fairly under the law. I am also defending the principles of transparency, good governance, and universal values of human rights. Commission meetings have just resumed this past Monday following a temporary suspension as a response to the April 9 Martyr’s Day happenings.