Julian Weinberg, Political Dialogues Director, met with the Tawfiq Rajhi, Minister for Major Reforms, Ms Selma Elloumi Rekik, Minister of Tourism, and members of parliament from Ennahda, Nidaa Tounes, the Popular Front, Tunisia First, and Al Irada. Julian also participated in a workshop on alternative media facilitated by Humetna Association in the town of Mjezabeb near Tunis.
Forthcoming local elections, in May, provide an exciting opportunity for Tunisia to continue its democratic transition and contributing to addressing the challenges around centralisation/de-centralisation that has been a critical theme since the 2011 revolution. They also provide an opportunity for increased youth participation in the political life of the country and addressing local issues, and many young people have responded by forming electoral lists.
The economy continues to occupy the focus of political debate and discussion. Tourist numbers are expected to be higher this year bringing much needed optimism, however politicians are aware that economic reform has not proceeded at a quick enough pace to satisfy popular demand.
Humetna Association is a non-governmental organisation working locally in Mjezabeb and Mornaguia, supporting young people to find ways to channel their political activism constructively and develop a deeper awareness of how to impact political debate. Their workshop on alternative media 20th March introduced citizenship journalism and alternative media to local young activists, sharing with them best practices on how they could be effective citizen journalists and cast greater light on local issues that matter to them.