During his era, Ben Ali's photograph was displayed in every shop, school and government office from the beach resorts of the Mediterranean coast to the impoverished villages and mining towns of Tunisia's hilly interior.
The deaths of 12 women travelling to work in an inappropriate vehicle in the village of Sabbela provoked a wave of anger among Tunisians.
His critics still welcome the ouster of Tunisia's President Zine el Abidine Ben Ali in the first of a series of uprisings in the Arab region in 2011. But economic woes have left many, especially young people, feeling the revolution is only half-won.
Subscribe to our Youtube channel for all latest in-depth, on the ground reporting from around the world.
Copyright © 2019 TRT World.