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Friday, 05 March 2021

Cabinet reshuffle expected after first session of newly-elected parliament: MP Mostafa Bakri

'I don't have information on which cabinet ministers will stay or leave, but I got reliable information that an imminent cabinet reshuffle is expected in the coming period,' said Mostafa Bakri

Gamal Essam El-Din , Sunday 10 Jan 2021
Mostafa Bakri
File photo: Mostaqbal Watan party MP and a journalist, Mostafa Bakri
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Egypt's newly-elected parliament — the House of Representatives — will hold an opening procedural session on Tuesday to elect a speaker and two deputies. Some MPs expect that parliament's procedural session will be followed by a limited cabinet reshuffle.

Mostafa Bakri, a Mostaqbal Watan party MP and a journalist, said in a TV interview on Saturday evening that he received information saying that there will be a cabinet reshuffle to the government of Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli, and that this could take place in the next few days or weeks after the end of parliament's opening procedural session.

"I don't have information on which cabinet ministers will stay or leave, but I got reliable information that an imminent cabinet reshuffle is expected in the coming period," said Bakri, also stating that he is not sure whether it will be a limited cabinet reshuffle or a complete overhaul of the government of Prime Minister Madbouly.

Egypt’s Speaker of Parliament Ali Abdel-Aal said last month that the government is not obliged to submit a resignation following the end of the parliamentary elections.

"We do not have any articles in the constitution that stipulate that the government should submit a resignation at the end of parliamentary elections or before a new parliament is elected," said Abdel-Aal, adding that "the constitution [Article 146] states that it is the president of the republic who has the full authority to appoint a new government at any time."

However, Abdel-Aal said that once a new parliament is elected, the government might choose to deliver a policy statement before the House of Representatives to shed light on its policies in the coming stage.

Abdel-Aal also indicated that President El-Sisi might choose to change the government or introduce a limited cabinet reshuffle after the election of a new parliament.

Article 146 of the constitution states that the President of the Republic shall entrust a prime minister with forming the government and delivering a policy statement before the House of Representatives. If the president's appointed government fails to win the confidence of the majority of MPs within 30 days at the most, the President shall appoint a prime minister who is nominated by the majority party or the coalition that holds the majority in the House of Representatives.

Article 147 also states that the President of the Republic can relieve the existing government from carrying out its duties, but only after winning the approval of the majority of MPs.

The government of Prime Minister Madbouly came to office in June 2018. Madbouly said at the time that the main job of his government is to complete implementing 2016's IMF-inspired economic reform programme.

There were two limited cabinet reshuffles over the last two years. The first was in March 2019, when Kamel El-Wazir was appointed as Minister of Transport. The second was in December 2019, when ten new cabinet ministers were named by El-Sisi and Madbouli and approved by parliament.

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