Ministry of Defense: bill to improve military service | Tunisia News Gazette

Ministry of Defense: bill to improve military service

A new bill to improve the conditions and efficiency of military service has been drafted by the Ministry of Defense, Minister of Defense Abdelkrim Zbidi announced on Monday.

Heard by the Committee on Security and Defense in the House of People’s Representatives (HPR), Zbidi explained that the draft law states that the situation of job seekers in the public and private sectors towards the national service must be regularised in advance. He proposed the cancellation of the individual assignment mechanism, which according to the Minister, opposes the principle of equality before the law.

The bill also proposes the completion of civil service in ministries, local authorities and public institutions. “This formula, more effective, will encourage young people to provide national service and allow to participate, indirectly, for the impetus of the economic view as part of partnerships signed with the structures in question,” said Zbidi quoting the example of the doctors who could, as part of such partnerships be affected in the interior regions.

Among the novelties contained in this draft law are also the reinforcement of the principle of equality between men and women before the national service and the encouragement of young people to follow vocational training as part of the national service.

There are 10 military training centres in the big cities of Grand Tunis, Bizerte, Gafsa, Beja, Nabeul, and Gabes. Their capacity is 1,500 trainees in specialties adapted to the needs of their regions, he specified

Zbidi claimed that out of a total of 31,000 youths summoned for military service in 2017, only 506, or 1.65 %, showed up. According to him, the national army is, however, not able to accommodate all the young people who should pass the service each year and the number reaches 60,000.

The Minister further stated that in response to the Presidential Decree on the Review and Promotion of the Legislative Framework of the National Service, a committee has been established within the Ministry of Defense to organise a national consultation to examine means capable to promote the legislative framework governing military service in Tunisia.

Zbidi also explained that the recommendations of a national meeting organised on this subject insist on maintaining the compulsory nature of military service and the creation of a civil service within ministries, local authorities and public institutions.

According to Zdibi, an opinion poll prepared by a consulting firm showed that Tunisian women were ready to go to military service in the event of an improvement in infrastructure. According to this same survey, the Tunisian citizen has no idea of military service. “The study also demonstrated the need to revise the formulas of military service and the monthly allowance of soldiers,” he added.

Source: TAP News Agency

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