Press Release

27 January 2013

Statement by the South African Government on the adoption of the Tunisian Constitution and appointment of the new Government of Tunisia

The Government of South Africa would like to congratulate the people of the Republic of Tunisia on the occasion of the adoption of their new constitution. Three years since the revolution of 14 January 2011 and just over two years since the start of their mandate, the elected representatives of the people of Tunisia have shown the world and the African continent in particular, the value of dialogue, consultation and consensus. This historic document serves as proof that African countries can address their own challenges and produce organic legislation which meets the demands and aspirations of their people.

Despite many challenges to the security and stability of the country and the region, the people, elected officials and government of Tunisia have remained steadfast in their determination to reach this significant milestone in their quest for the establishment of a democratic dispensation. Tunisia has, in the adoption of this constitution, overcome the adversities it was facing and become a shining example to the region and it is hoped that its example and experience can be drawn upon by others. The influence and success of the National Dialogue process on the achievement marked today, cannot and should not be ignored by others undergoing a democratic transition as both South Africa and Tunisia have shown the value of an all-inclusive process in negotiating a democratic transition.

While the road to a democratic transition in Tunisia is in its final stages, we express our confidence in the Tunisian people to culminate their transition in the first full democratic elections under this new constitution in the very near future. South Africa remains committed to support democratic transition on the African continent as well as in the Middle East and North African regions through sharing of our own experiences of its own democratic transition 20 years ago this year.

We wish President Moncef Marzouki, as well as the newly formed government of Prime Minister Mehdi Jomaa all the success in this final stage of the transitional period and assure you of the friendship and support of South Africa towards the Government and people of Tunisia.

Enquiries: Mr Clayson Monyela, spokesperson for DIRCO, 0828845974

ISSUED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS AND COOPERATION

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