In a 10-point response to the Egyptian parliament's statement on his accusations that it had misspent an estimated EGP 18 million in public funds, independent MP Anwar El-Sadat vowed that he would issue more reports about the misuse of public funds by parliament.
Sadat said the claims made in parliament's statement should be thoroughly investigated by the budget committee.
Sadat said earlier this week that parliament purchased three cars for use by parliament officials in excess of the budget allotted for such purchases, which parliament has denied in its response.
"The misuse of public funds in Egypt's parliament has become an issue of public opinion, not to mention that MPs should exercise their powers in raising questions about parliament's funds," said Sadat.
Sadat vowed that he would reveal more "files about corruption and misuse of public funds in Egypt's parliamentary circles."
"I vow that I will force parliament's budget committee to open more files about corruption and misuse of public funds when it meets to discuss parliament's 2015/2016 budget," said Sadat, adding that "I am sure that what I said about the purchase of expensive cars represents is just the tip of an iceberg of corruption and misuse of public funds."
"I am also ready to face any kind of questioning because nobody is above the law, but I promise I will be loyal to securing the interests of the people who voted for me."
Sadat questioned the parliament secretariat-general's statement saying that when parliament was dissolved in 2012, the speaker's heavily armoured car was sent to the cabinet to be used by the prime minister.
"While this represents a complete assault on the House's funds, parliament should move quickly to recover this car or refer the case to prosecution authorities to investigate how this car was used by the cabinet," said Sadat.
Parliament's secretariat-general said in a statement on Monday that a request to buy 25 cars to serve the needs of the speaker, his two deputies and other senior officials and to replace old ones that were no longer viable for use was issued in December 2015 – one month before parliament was elected – by Minister of Parliamentary Affairs Magdi El-Agati.
In response, Sadat said parliament's 2015/2016 balance sheet said nothing about the 25 cars.
"I want to ask who had decided that the 25 cars were no longer viable for use and who decided that a fleet of 25 new cars – including an expensive armoured one – were to be bought while parliament was dissolved," said Sadat.
Sadat admonished parliament saying that said it was the Ministry of Defence that was responsible for buying the speaker's new armoured car.
"I think the Ministry of Defence was mentioned in order to scare me away from raising any more questions about this misuse of public funds and force me to close this file," said Sadat.
Sadat added that while parliament's statement said that only 17 of the 25 cars have been bought since February 2016 – or one month after parliament was elected – "I wonder why 2015/2016's balance sheet said nothing at all about this."
"I think the financial details of this purchase operation should be heavily discussed in the budget committee," said Sadat.
According to Sadat, parliament's statement shows that one armoured car estimated at 393,000 euros (or EGP 3.4 million) was bought in December 2015, and that parliament sought to buy another two armoured cars estimated at EGP 12 million in February 2016.
"While this means that as much as EGP 15.4 million have been spent since December 2015 to buy three armoured cars, parliament's 2015/2016 balance sheet shows as many as EGP 18 million have been spent to buy the three armoured cars," said Sadat.
"There is a big difference between the figure cited by the statement released by parliament's secretariat-general on one hand and the one cited by the balance sheet."
Sadat rebuffed parliament's statement accusing him of opting to make his accusations public on TV channels without first contacting the parliament's secretariat-general or seeking a response from the speaker.
"Since the new parliament was formed in January 2016, I have tried many times to seek answers from the secretariat-general and the speaker," said Sadat, adding that "the only response I received was when I decided to resign as head of parliament's human rights committee."
"When I sent them the resignation request, they said in a response that they wholeheartedly welcome this resignation," said Sadat.
Sadat concluded that while government and parliamentary officials opted to squander money on buying expensive and armoured cars in a time of economic crisis and belt-tightening measures, parliament's budget allocates a very small amount of money to improving the skills of parliament's staff.
"Parliament's 2015/2016 budget said the cost of training one employee stood at just EGP 10 per month – or almost half a dollar," said Sadat.
Sadat insisted that his accusations were by no means motivated by a personal grudge against the speaker or any other senior parliamentary officials.
"It was motivated by pure public interests and that MPs have an obligation to fully exercise their supervisory powers," said Sadat.