Tunisians are encouraged to vote in the country's parliamentary elections this Sunday, Oct. 26, 2014.
While voting turnout in 2011 was less than 45 per cent, civil society organisations have joined forces to launch new initiatives aimed at encouraging citizens to take part in the elections.
Tunisians now have access to material online to choose from the myriad of political parties and candidates taking part in the elections. They are also able to verify the candidates’ messages and even report on corruption and abuse.
Ikhtiar Tounes (Arabic/French)
Ikhtiar Tounes, which translates to Tunisia's Choice from Arabic, is a platform that compares voters’ opinions and answers on certain political and economic issues in Tunisia with several parties’ proposed solutions and programs. The end result is a comparability rate between the user's views and those of different parties registered on the platform.
“Birrasmi” is a casual expression in Tunisia. It means “really?”
This platform verifies proposed solutions or recent statements made by political parties with sourced facts. The platform then assigns a credibility badge ranging from “totally true” i.e. feasible to “totally false” i.e. impossible to achieve.
Billkamcha is an anti-corruption platform where citizens can report administrative corruption in the country through several means of communication with the platform.
Several other organizations such as I-Watch or Mourakiboun have been working closely on monitoring the organizations of the elections, and transgressions have been noted. Some include signature buy-outs from citizens and/or data theft. Some candidates for the presidential elections have been involved in this scandal without further investigations or procession to trial.
Some voters today reported that their names are missing where they thought they were registered to vote. Others were registered in two bureaus.
To follow a live citizen coverage of the elections, you can follow the hashtag #TnElec2014. The National Public Television has also set an interactive digital map (Arabic) where results will be gradually reported in the upcoming days after the votes have been counted.
Tunisia will be holding its presidential elections next month on November 23.