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Tunisian President's Health Raises Questions Amid 'Disappearance' And 'Reappearance'

Tunisian president's health raises questions amid 'disappearance' and 'reappearance', with some speculating that his absence may be related to a medical condition.

Rhyley Carney
Apr 06, 20235628 Shares106185 Views
Tunisian president's health raises questions amid 'disappearance'and 'reappearance', with some speculating that his absence may be related to a medical condition.
The nearly two-week absence of Tunisian President Kais Saied has prompted concerns about his health and succession in a country that has become increasingly authoritarian since he seized control.
From March 22 and April 3, the 65-year-old president made no public appearances, but returned on Monday after media outlets, activists, and the country's opposition raised concerns about his "disappearance."

President Saied's Disappearance

Tunisia, formerly viewed as the single democracy to emerge from the 2011 Arab Spring protests, enacted a new constitution in July last year that solidified Saied's one-man rule and was largely perceived to have removed the country's final traces of democracy.
The president has described parliament as a "state inside a state" and an "institutional of nonsense."
President Saied's disappearance on April 4, 2023, has added to the already volatile political climate in Tunisia. According to reports, the President was last seen attending a public event in the city of Sousse.
His whereabouts since then are unknown, and his office has not provided any information on his whereabouts.
The circumstances surrounding President Saied's disappearance have raised concerns among Tunisians, with many speculating that it could be a form of political protest or an attempt to undermine the democratic system.
Some have pointed to the President's recent decision to dissolve parliament and assume executive authority, which has been met with both support and criticism, as a possible motive for his disappearance.

Concerns Over The President's Health

The lack of information about President Saied's whereabouts has fueled concerns about his health, with some suggesting that his absence may be related to a serious medical condition.
The President has been known to have high blood pressure and has reportedly been receiving treatment for the condition.
However, there has been no official confirmation from the Tunisian presidency about the President's health, adding to the confusion and speculation surrounding his disappearance.

Reappearance In Public

Amid rumors, Tunisian President Kais Saied appeared in a video uploaded on his official Facebook page, dismissing "crazy" claims about his health after nearly two weeks of no public appearances.
These people deserve nothing but contempt.- President Saied
His appearance came after almost two weeks of rumors about his health and speculation about his whereabouts, which had led to anxiety and uncertainty among the Tunisian people.
The opposition in Tunisia had raised concerns about the president's health and the lack of transparency about his condition. They had called for more information about his whereabouts and had criticized the government's handling of the situation.
However, with the president's reemergence in public, the opposition's concerns have been assuaged, and they have welcomed the president's return.

Tunisian President Kais Saied reappears in public dismissind 'mad' speculations over his health

Political Implications

The situation has political implications as well, with the absence of the President leaving a power vacuum in the country's leadership.
The Tunisian constitution stipulates that in the event of the President's incapacitation or death, the Speaker of Parliament assumes the presidency on an interim basis.
However, the recent dissolution of parliament by President Saied has left the country without a functioning parliament or government, creating a power vacuum that has further complicated the situation.
He holds all the power so his whereabouts and state of health are of immense importance equally for those who support him and those who oppose and want to see him gone.- Intisar Fakir, senior fellow and director of the North Africa and Sahel program at the Washington, DC-based Middle East Institute

International Community's Response

The situation in Tunisia has garnered international attention, with many expressing concern about the country's stability and future.
The United Nations has called for calm and urged all parties to respect the democratic process and the rule of law.
The United States, which has close ties to Tunisia, has also expressed concern about the situation and called for a swift resolution of the crisis.
If all Tunisians were against (Saied), there would have been more opportunity and willingness to mobilize and for other actors to join.- Intisar Fakir, senior fellow and director of the North Africa and Sahel program at the Washington, DC-based Middle East Institute

Final Words

The 'disappearance' of President Saied has raised serious concerns about his health and the transparency of his administration.
The situation has also highlighted the fragility of Tunisia's democratic institutions and the potential for political instability in the country.
President Saied's reemergence in public has put an end to rumors about his health and has reassured the Tunisian people about the stability of their country.
The incident has also highlighted the need for greater transparency and openness in the government's handling of sensitive issues.
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