More than 100 members of Tunisia’s moderate Islamist Ennahda movement resigned on Saturday, citing "wrong political choices" made by its leaders.
"The wrong political choices of the leadership of the Ennahda movement led to its isolation and failure to actively engage in any common front to resist the imminent authoritarian danger represented by the decisions of September 22,” the resigned 113 members said in a joint statement.
Signatories of the statement included former Health Minister Abdellatif Al-Makki, former Agriculture Minister Mohamed Ben Salem and lawmaker Jamila Al-Kissi.
The resigned members attributed their decision to “the disruption of the movement’s internal democracy and the unilateral decision-making by a group of loyalists to its leaders, which resulted in wrong decisions and choices that led to political alliances that have no logic or benefit and contradict the pledges made to the voters.”
They stressed their “commitment to defending democracy which was built through the sacrifices made by Tunisians during the revolution”.
On Sept. 22, President Kais Saied said he will rule by decree and abolished the body established in 2014 to monitor the constitutionality of laws.
The statement said Saied's unconstitutional moves “would not have been welcomed by large groups of the people had it not been for the flabby image that parliament has rolled into due to the deviation and populism of some of its affiliates and because of the failed administration of its speaker (Rached Ghannouchi)," the statement read.
Ennahda is the largest party in the Tunisian parliament.
On July 25, Saied ousted the government, suspended parliament, and assumed executive authority. While he insists that his "exceptional measures" are meant to "save" the country, his critics accuse him of orchestrating a coup.
Tunisia has been seen as the only country that succeeded in carrying out a democratic transition among Arab countries which witnessed popular revolutions toppling ruling regimes, including Egypt, Libya, and Yemen.