Mustapha Ben Jafar
|Mustapha Ben Jafar
مصطفى بن جعفر
|President of the Constituent Assembly|
22 November 2011
|Preceded by||Sahbi Karoui (Acting President of the Chamber of Deputies)
Mekki Aloui (Acting President of the Chamber of Advisors)
|Minister of Health|
17 January 2011 – 27 January 2011
|President||Fouad Mebazaa (Acting)|
|Prime Minister||Mohamed Ghannouchi|
|Preceded by||Mondher Zenaidi|
|Succeeded by||Habiba Zehi Ben Romdhane|
|Secretary General of Ettakatol|
25 October 2002
|Preceded by||Position established|
8 December 1940 |
|Political party||Democratic Forum for Labour and Liberties|
Mustapha Ben Jafar (مصطفى بن جعفر) (born 8 December 1940) is a Tunisian politician and doctor who has been President of the Constituent Assembly of Tunisia since November 2011. He founded and has led the Democratic Forum for Labour and Liberties (FDTL), a political party, since 1994.
Ben Jafar was born in 1940 in Tunis. He attended Sadiki College from 1950–1956, then studied medicine in France to become a radiologist. In 1970 he returned to Tunisia, joined the University of Tunis's medical faculty and worked also at the university hospital. In 1976 he was one of the founders of a weekly opinion magazine and an organization that evolved into the Tunisian Human Rights League (LTDH).
In 1978 he joined others to start a political party, the Movement of Socialist Democrats (MDS). The MDS was the largest opposition party as of 1991 and the ruling party made an apparent attempt to work with the MDS as a "participatory opposition." Ben Jafar was the secretary-general of the MDS in 1992, and ran for the top MDS office, but lost to Mohamed Moadda, and resigned from the party because it seemed to have cooperated with the ruling party so much (receiving a government subsidy and accommodations) and achieved so little.
In 1994 Ben Jafar founded the Democratic Forum for Labour and Liberties party (abbreviated FDTL and also called Ettakatol). It was not legally recognized until 2002. He attempted to run for the presidency in 2009 as the FDTL candidate but was disqualified and was in any case widely understood to have no chance to win against the established authoritarian incumbent president Ben Ali.
Turbulent protests in January 2011 drove President Ben Ali from the country, and Prime Minister Mohamed Ghannouchi included Ben Jafar as Minister of Health in an interim government beginning 17 January 2011. Along with other minority party members, Ben Jafar resigned within days as public protests continued against the continued dominance of the RCD party in government. Ben Jafar was succeeded as health minister by Habiba Zehi Ben Romdhane.
In the October 2011 elections to the Constituent Assembly Ben Jafar's party placed fourth and he was elected to a seat in the Constituent Assembly. Supported by his own party, Ben Jafar was considered a possible candidate for President in the wake of the election, receiving open consideration from Ennahda, which had received a plurality of seats. The leading parties agreed instead on a power-sharing arrangement according to which Ben Jafar would be named President of the Constituent Assembly. He was elected to that post by the Assembly when it met on 22 November 2011, receiving 145 votes against 68 for opposition candidate Maya Jribi.
- Murphy, Emma. Economic and political change in Tunisia: from Bourguiba to Ben Ali. pp. 209-211.
- Beaugé, Florence. "En Tunisie, l'opposant Mustapha Ben Jaafar candidat à la présidentielle" Le Monde 25 September 2009.(fr)
- Belaid, Fethi; AFP staff (17 January 2011). "Photo of Mustapha Ben Jaafar plus caption". Agence France-Presse, Getty Images. Retrieved 28 January 2011.
- Maktabi, Rima. "Troops battle ex-ruler's bodyguards in Tunisia." CNN.com, Jan 16 2011.
- Belaid, Fethi; AFP staff (28 January 2011). "Photo of Habiba Zehi Ben Romdhane plus caption". Agence France-Presse, Getty Images. Retrieved 28 January 2011.
- Sadok Ayari, "Mustapha Ben Jaafar Elected President of the Constituent Assembly", Tunisia Live, 22 November 2011.
as President of the Chamber of Deputies
|President of the Constituent Assembly
as President of the Chamber of Advisors