The relationship is going on in a collision course between Tunisian President Kais Saied and Prime Minister Hicham Mechichi, who appointed him in this position himself. Each of them sends hostile messages to the other, thus opening the door to the struggle over influence between them.
The meeting between Saeed and Al-Walkhi at the Carthage Palace last week is a turning point in their relationship, after Saeed publicly reprimanded him in front of the camera for seeking to appoint advisors who held positions during the rule of Ben Ali.
In that scene, Mishichi seemed shy and amazed under the weight of the harsh criticism directed by Qais Saeed, against him against the employment of the former central bank governor, Tawfiq Bakkar, and Mungi Safra, the former economic advisor to President Ben Ali.
Many observers expressed their dissatisfaction with the method adopted by the Tunisian president in dealing with the Meshchite, considering that his public reproach to him degrades his prestige as a prime minister with the power to appoint and dismiss.
It also appears that the interference of the Tunisian president in the area of the prime minister's powers disturbed the latter after a series of meetings that he had with his cabinet ministers without his prior knowledge, which prompted al-Mishichi to reverse the attack and respond stubbornly.
Qais Saeed recently met with a number of ministers, such as the ministers of justice, foreign affairs, interior and state property, to direct them according to his perceptions without coordination with the prime minister, which prompted the latter to warn his ministers.
Without hesitation, Prime Minister Hisham Al-Meshishi sent yesterday a message that appeared to be a warning and a threat to his ministers, calling on them to coordinate in advance with him before visiting the President of the Republic, and to write reports on the content of their meetings with him.
A growing conflict
Political analyst Salah Al-Din Al-Jurchi says to Al-Jazeera Net that part of the cold war between the Tunisian president and the prime minister is due to Qais Saeed's feeling that the prime minister he chose himself has turned against him.
Al-Mashishi was not known to the public opinion except when President Qais Saeed chose him on July 25 as Prime Minister, after he was Minister of Interior in the government of Ilyas Fakhfakh, who resigned after suspicions of corruption.
Al-Jurchi believes that this conflict will have a catastrophic effect on the normal functioning of the executive authority, warning that the level of the conflict will reach the level of each party resorting to using its powers against the other.
Some do not rule out the Tunisian president’s tendency to preside over ministerial councils that are usually supervised by the prime minister, while others are likely to have the prime minister reverse the attack and dismiss ministers affiliated with Saeed.
Al-Jurchi estimates that the prime minister may be forced to dismiss ministers in his government who are close to the Tunisian president if they do not abide by his instructions, by consulting in advance with him before their visits to the Tunisian president and informing him of everything.
Then, the already deteriorating general situation in the country will be affected due to the high rates of poverty and unemployment and the decline in growth due to the health crisis of the Corona virus, which will enter the country in a power struggle, the consequences of which will be dire, according to him.
The media and political analyst Ziad Al-Hani attributed the reasons for the emergence of this conflict to Prime Minister Hisham Al-Mishishi adhering to his full constitutional powers, and refusing to submit to the will of the President.
He tells Al-Jazeera Net that the Tunisian president had wanted from the start to play the role of the prime minister, to be subordinate to him and not independent of his powers, and the conflict between them is likely to rage if the president does not abide by the limits of his authority.
He adds that any impact of this conflict on the general situation is linked to the nature of the Tunisian president's reaction to this labor;
If the prime minister does not allow the prime minister to exercise his constitutional authority, then the result will be disastrous.
The Tunisian parliamentary system provides the head of government with executive powers that are broader than those of the head of state, who oversees foreign policy, command of the armed forces, national security, and the declaration of war and peace.
The president of the state has the right to present legislative initiatives to parliament, which is what President Qais Saeed is working on, in addition to sealing laws and the possibility of returning draft laws to parliament for approval by an enhanced majority.
Observers believe that Prime Minister Hicham El-Mechichi has resolved his order by resorting to a parliamentary bloc based on the Ennahda Movement, the Heart of Tunisia, and the Dignity Coalition, in order to form a strong political belt for him in Parliament to extend his influence.
Yesterday, Wednesday, Al-Meshishi met at the Government Palace in the Kasbah with the head of the Ennahda Movement, Noureddine El-Beheiry, and the head of the Heart of Tunisia party, Osama al-Khulaifi, and the head of the Dignity Coalition bloc Saifuddin Makhlouf.
While the prime minister's statement pointed out that this meeting comes within the framework of strengthening consultations with parties and blocs, observers see it as part of the consultations to reform the political scene in preparation for restraining the president.