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Brotherhood's Shura Council chairman criticises Morsi declaration
Chairman of Egypt's Shura Council - and member of Brotherhood's FJP - takes all by surprise by voicing opposition to President Morsi's divisive constitutional declaration
Gamal Essam El-Din , Sunday 25 Nov 2012
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Ahmed Fahmy
MP Ahmed Fahmy (Photo: Ikhwan Online)

Ahmed Fahmi, chairman of the Islamist-dominated Shura Council (the upper, consultative house of Egypt's parliament), seized on Thursday's council session to criticise the constitutional declaration issued by President Mohamed Morsi on 22 November.

"We had hopes that President Morsi would put the constitutional declaration before a national referendum," Fahmi said. He also argued that the declaration "has severely divided the nation into Islamists and civilians." Fahmi urged Morsi to conduct a national dialogue with all forces to put an end to the crisis triggered by the declaration.

Fahmi’s comments came as a surprise to many, given that not only is the chairman of the Shura Council a leading member of the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) – the political arm of  Muslim Brotherhood from which Morsi hails – but he is also a relative of Morsi himself.

In its brief debate over Morsi’s declaration, the council itself was divided into supporters and opponents. Islamists, led by FJP and the ultraconservative Salafist Nour Party, hailed Morsi’s declaration.

Tarek El-Sehari, a Salafist and the deputy Shura Council chairman, said the declaration "is a necessity, with a view to the fact that the Mubarak-appointed judges and prosecutors failed to refer the diehards of the former regime to trial or put a stop to their attempts to dissolve the Shura Council and the constitution-drafting assembly, and have indulged in thuggery and hooliganism under the banner of commemorating the revolution."

"These criminals can never be branded as 'revolutionary forces' and should rather be sent to trial as required by the constitutional declaration," said El-Sehary. "Everyone has the right to criticise the president, but nobody – especially those who failed to secure seats in the last parliamentary elections – has the right to attack public property or incite violence."

El-Sehary sharply directed attacks against those who "resorted to insults" when criticising  Morsi’s declaration. He argued that the building of a new Egypt should not come at the expense of putting obstacles in the way of a democratically-elected president.

Ezzeddin El-Qomi, a leading FJP official, opened fire on the independent Judges’ Club, arguing that it "is only a social club, which should be concerned with achieving the personal needs of its members rather than becoming a political forum for judges."

The Judges’ Union announced yesterday that courts would organise a strike to protest Morsi’s declaration.

According to El-Qomi, Morsi’s declaration is aimed at thwarting internal and international conspiracies to destabilize Egypt. "This declaration is a necessity, but it came too late because some judicial authorities are doing their best to dissolve all elected institutions – especially parliament," he said.

Tarek Mostafa, another FJP member, said the constitutional declaration "simply aims to ensure stability for a temporary period of time until a new parliament is elected." He sharply attacked "those who launched terrorist attacks and  torched the headquarters of the FJP in several cities across Egypt."

Saad Emara, another FJP member, fired a barrage of attacks against the European Union and the US, "which rushed to criticise the declaration" and "the bad coverage by private television satellite channels." He added: "This demonstrates that our enemies are doing their best to meddle in our own affairs and cause instability."

For their part, representatives of liberal parties agreed that President Morsi made a big mistake by issuing his 22 November constitutional declaration.

Mostafa Hammouda, the representative of the Wafd party, said: "Morsi’s declaration has left the nation more divided than before." "The fact that Morsi is a democratically-elected president does not mean that he acts like a pharaoh and puts himself above state institutions, especially the judiciary," he said.

Nagi El-Shehabi, another civilian and chairman of the Geel (Generation) Party, argued that "not only Morsi broke the constitutional oath, but he also divided the nation. Instead of making a dialogue with all political forces, Morsi opted to resort to  the pharaohnic style of dictating policies on the nation."

Ihab El-Kharat, a member of the Egyptian Socialist Democratic Party, wondered that "Morsi’s declaration would open the door for revolutionary trials under the guise of punishing those guilty of killing rebels." He added: "I do not know how these trials will be conducted and what guarantees of fair trial will be provided to defendants." He warned: "Some revolutionary trials in some countries turned out to be tools against innocent people and committed crimes against humanity."

El-Kharat argued that Morsi was not authorised to issue his 22 November declaration. "He does not have the authority to fire the prosecutor-general or appoint a new one instead of him, not to mention that the declaration is a strike against the independence of the judiciary," said El-Kharat. He concluded that "Morsi, by concentrating all powers in his hands, will never be able to achieve any of the revolution’s goals." He expressed fears that "the declaration will be used to detain critics of Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood group rather than safeguard the revolution against its enemies."



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MPA
26-11-2012 09:25pm
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These Savages deserved Mubarak and SCAF
They apparently hate elected officials if their side didn't win, and praise the courts when they dissovle those bodies. What kind of democracy is that? It isn't. Morsi was absolutely correct in doing what he did. The old regime's guards should never have the power to block the winners of the revolution Just think if the US still had royal judges and ministers blocking everything that Congress and George Washington tried to do?
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5



abdu
26-11-2012 07:52pm
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Partisan approach will be self destructive
In a true democracy power is shared between elected peoples representatives. Here, the opposition leaders are not elected leaders- the dissolution of elected parliament has left the President with no elected representatives to share power with. The supreme judges council/ club and most of the judges are remenants of Mubarak era, handpicked by him. If a judge is appointed by the elected parliament- he cannot be removed without due process. What president Morsi is doing is fast track purging of Mubarak era remenants. Hope Egyptians realise this. Otherwise they will have to wait a long time -as happened in Turkey. If opposition parties dont shun partisan politics and unite with the democratically elected President- then they will destroy egypts democratic future.
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Khaled
26-11-2012 02:57pm
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Really?
"This demonstrates that our enemies are doing their best to meddle in our own affairs and cause instability." WELL MAKE SOUND REASONABLE DECISIONS AND YOU WILL NOT HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT WHAT "YOUR" ENEMIES WILL SAY!!! YOU MUST HAVE A GUILTY CONSCIOUS RIGHT??
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Ruud
26-11-2012 03:50am
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howmany
"He expressed fears that "the declaration will be used to detain critics of Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood group rather than safeguard the revolution against its enemies." How many so far?
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John Andrews
25-11-2012 08:31pm
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Utter Lies
Ahram English persistently publish complete and utter lies: "We had hopes that President Morsi would put the constitutional declaration before a national referendum," Fahmi said That statement is a totally unfounded lie. The truth is that those are the words of a known trouble-making Constitutional Assembly member called Nagi Al-Shahabi. So, be bleeding professionals for heaven's sake, or I'll get your job.
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Americanvoice
25-11-2012 06:43pm
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kick him out of the party
go to hell you joker
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