The people of Tunisia are grieving there first freely elected president Beji Caid Essebsi who died Thursday afternoon.
Essebsi won the country’s first free elections in 2014 following an uprising that swept across the Arab region in which the leaders of Egypt, Tunisia, and Libya were overthrown.
The oldest president in the world, he died at the age of 92.
He had been admitted at the hospital on Wednesday.
Earlier this year, Essebsi announced he would not stand in elections expected in November.
Former presidents of Tunisia
Tunisia has had five Presidents since the proclamation of the republic on July 25, 1957:
Habib Bourguiba 1957-1987
He was appointed President by the parliament on July 25, 1957, until the election of a permanent president. After the Constitution was enacted on June 1, 1959, a presidential election was held on November 8, 1959.
Being the only one running for office, he gained 91% of the votes to serve a five-year term. He was elected unopposed three more times. Shortly after winning his fourth full term, he was proclaimed President for Life.
He remained in office until being deposed in the coup d'état of November 7, 1987, organized by his Prime Minister Ben Ali.
Zine El Abidine Ben Ali 1987-2011
He was Prime Minister and Interior Minister under Bourguiba. Ben Ali had Bourguiba declared medically unfit to serve November 7, 1987. According to the Constitution, he became acting president pending new elections.
Ben Ali was elected unopposed for a full five-year term on April 2, 1989, and was re-elected three more times (the first time unopposed). On January 14, 2011, his regime fell in the Tunisian Revolution that started on December 17, 2010. Mohamed Ghannouchi, his Prime Minister, claimed the presidency, serving as acting President.
Fouad Mebazaa 2011
He was, at first, designated by the Constitutional Council to serve as an acting President, on January 15, 2011. Under Article 57 of the Constitution, an election should have taken place between 45 and 60 days following Mebazaa's appointment.
But on March 3, 2011, he announced the repeal of the 1959 Constitution and the election of a constituent assembly which had to draft a new one. Therefore, he became interim president pending new elections.
Moncef Marzouki 2011-2014
He was elected President by the Tunisian Constituent Assembly, on December 12, 2011. The next day, he was inaugurated, making him the first president not to be a member of the ruling party.
During the 2014 presidential election, he was defeated by former Prime Minister Caid Essebsi and left office on December 31, 2014.
Beji Caid Essebsi 2014-2019
He became the first president to be elected by universal suffrage after the Revolution, on December 21, 2014. On December 31, 2014, he took office as the fourth president of Tunisia, and the first to be freely elected.