Chahed files nomination papers for presidential race, says will not step down
09/08/2019 14:22, TUNIS/Tunisia

(TAP) - Prime Minister Youssef Chahed, Tahya Tounes party leader, filed Friday his nomination papers for the early presidential election scheduled for September 15.

He said he will meanwhile stay in office and see his responsibilities through to the end. Calls for him to step down are designed to put off elections insofar as his resignation implies the resignation of the whole cabinet, Chahed highlighted. This is inconceivable when the country is fighting terrorism and not to mention the fact there are no legal grounds for it.

The office of president carries many responsibilities; being in office means having hands clean and standing as guarantor of the Constitution and the democratic transition, said Chahed.

The president needs to be imbued with the notions of the State, national security and foreign relations and boast sharp-mindedness and a potential for negotiation and communication to make difficult decisions, he argued.

Tunisia needs a president who breaks with the old legal system and mindsets and practices "from which I myself suffered," Chahed said.

The Premier said he wants to convey another image of Tunisia, a State of justice which enjoys international respect and grants a distinguished position to young people who are still marginalised in political debate.

Chahed said he secured 30 endorsements from MPs. He was accompanied by Tahya Tounes activists and supporters chanting slogans in support for his candidacy.

Backers among politicians and businessmen were also present, including Kamel Morjane, Mohamed Ghariani, Khalil Ghariani and Hussein Jnayeh, in addition to MPs as well as media and sports people such as Zied Jaziri, Mourad Zghidi, Mofdi Mseddi and Hend Chaouch.

Chahed Thursday said he will be running for president after a national council meeting of Tahya Tounes unanimously voted for him.

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