Tunisian Parliament Speaker Mohamed Ennaceur was sworn in as interim President on Thursday, hours after President Beji Caid Essebsi’s death in a smooth transition of power in the birthplace of the Arab Spring.
Essebsi, 92, helped guide Tunisia’s transition to democracy after the 2011 revolution.
Ennaceur said earlier in a short speech, aired on state television, that he will lead the country, as an Interim President, according to the constitution.
“I urge the Tunisian people to unite and to show solidarity, to be able to move on and achieve the aspirations of all Tunisians”, Ennaceur said.
Since 2014, he was the President of the Assembly of the Representatives of the People, and leader of the governing Nidaa Tounes party.
Mohamed Ennaceur previously served as Minister of Social Affairs in the 1970s and 1980s under President Habib Bourguiba, and again in 2011 in the transitional Ghannouchi and Essebsi governments.
Since President Beji Caid Essebsi’s death, Ennaceur will be acting as Tunisia’s President and Head of State, according to the Constitutional provision for presidential succession.
According to Article 84 of the Tunisian constitution, an Interim President may serve in their role for 45 to 90 days, meaning Ennaceur’s role is due to expire on 23 October 2019.
The Presidential elections in Tunisia is scheduled for 17 November 2019.