Skip to content

Tunis’ Bold Political Appointment

Tunisia’s president named geologist Najla Bouden as the country’s first ever female prime minister-designate on Wednesday, to form a government with limited executive clout after the president seized wide-ranging powers two months ago. Bouden, a university lecturer and political unknown, will take office after President Kais Saied on 25 July sacked the government of Hichem Mechichi, suspended parliament, lifted MPs’ immunity and took over the judiciary. His moves followed months of political deadlock in the face of a pressing economic crisis and mounting coronavirus deaths. While some Tunisians have supported his decisions against a reviled political class, he has faced repeated calls to name a government. The president, who will head the cabinet, repeatedly emphasised the “historic” nature of the nomination of a woman, calling it “an honour for Tunisia and a homage to Tunisian women”.