Zine el Abidine Ben Ali was the former president of Tunisia. He had been a president since the year 1987 and served continuously as the president for 23 years.
During his reign, the country experienced difficulties which were brought about by his poor governance. There was so much corruption that the citizens could not bear it any more. Many people were jobless, food was expensive and corruption was continuously on the rise.
Demonstrations were triggered by an incident where a fruit vendor who was a jobless graduate committed suicide because his cart had been taken away by the police. They had denied him a chance to make a living through the business of selling fruits using the cart and were looking for a way to exploit him.
Many Tunisians were leading frustrated lives. The demonstrations which followed this incident cost about 300 hundred lives while about 700 people were wounded. Ben Ali who was the president tried to defend himself by saying that he had given out his best and his governance was directed to serve the Tunisians. His objectives were to develop the country to modernity.
The president was accused of harboring unlawful weapons, archeological artifacts and illicit drugs which were found in his country’s presidential palace. The president fled to Saudi Arabia in search of refuge together with his wife, Leila Trabelsi. Saudi Arabia in this context played a role which can be viewed to be against the wishes of the general Tunisians.
The trial that charged him with 15 and a half years imprisonment was conducted in his absence. His wife was also charged with 20 years of imprisonment. They were together fined $65 million. People who were close associates of the president were charged and are facing various sentences.
The Saudi Arabia government hosted Ben Ali because they thought that friends should be there for each other at all times. The Saudi Arabia welcome of Ben Ali and his family was a mockery to Tunisians. They had worked so hard to get corruption out of their country but justice was not fulfilled.
Ben Ali’s escape to another country could suggest that he was indeed guilty and was afraid to face the charges. If he was not guilty, he would not be afraid to face the charges. Most of Saudi Arabia citizens did not support hosting of criminals. It was not their opinion but the president’s opinion.
Saudi Arabia acceptance of Ben Ali is can be viewed in the light of the Saudi Arabia government being unfair and inconsiderate of the harm that Ben Ali had caused to Tunisians. Such kind of a stand on the part of the government of Saudi Arabia can has a huge potential of straining the relation between the governments of Tunisia and Saudi Arabia. As a matter of fact, there are other countries which are against the action carried out by the Saudi Arabia government.
This action by the government of Saudi Arabia has violated democracy; it is most likely that the relationship would yield negative results. It is worth pointing out that the government of Saudi Arabia has shown such tendency of harboring criminal in the past and thus obstructing justice from being executed. It should be recalled that Idi Amin was ousted from Uganda and sought refuge in Saudi Arabia.
Idi Amin was never brought to justice and yet he had killed so many Uganda citizens as well as Israelites and Asians during his terror reign. Idi Amin died in Saudi Arabia; the government of Saudi Arabia should stop protecting criminals and let justice have its way. Saudi Arabia is an Islamic nation and Muslims are not known to obstruct justice thus the Saudi Arabia government should live up to the spirit of the Islamic religion and hand over Ben Ali.