April 6 Movement co-founder turns down presidential team offer

Sherif Tarek , Monday 6 Aug 2012

Ahmed Maher, leading figure of the April 6 Youth Movement, opts to remain committed to the revolutionary group, which will continue its political role through opposition

Ahmed Maher
Co-founder of the April six Youth Movement, Ahmed Maher

Ahmed Maher co-founder of the April 6 Youth Movement has refused to be part of the presidential team that will assist Egypt President Mohamed Morsi.

Maher, a young engineer, was approached to be a member of a consultative body, but after a meeting with members of his group, turned down the overtures.

According to a press release issued by the April 6 Youth Movement, most members rejected seeing Maher assume a role in the presidential team.  

Just one day earlier, leftist activist Wael Khalil announced on his official Twitter account that he would not be accepting a position in Morsi's presidential team. He said that he would rather be able to freely criticise or praise those in power.

Similarly, April 6's press statement cited, as one of its reasons for Maher's refusal, its intention to remain in opposition and continue in its political role as a group that "monitors the democratic development in the country."

The press release also included two other arguments for Maher's refusal of the post. One was the 'bad choices' of the new Cabinet in which ministers and figures from the old regime are included.

Qandil’s government includes 29 technocrats (seven of whom served under the previous premier Kamal El-Ganzouri who himself also served under Hosni Mubarak), four ministers from the Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party, one minister from the moderate Islamist Al-Wasat Party, and one from the Salafist Al-Nahda Party.

The other reason cited in the press release was that that a job with the presidential team would hinder Maher who "must continue his mission within the movement."

The press release reads: "The movement will play its role to offer advice, ideas and cooperation, as well as fighting corruption, limiting the role that figures from the former regime can play in political life and working to realise the demands of the revolution: freedom, human dignity and social justice."

Founded in 2008 in support of a strike called for in the industrial city of Mahalla on 6 April of that year, the April 6 Youth Movement is one of the most prominent Egyptian revolutionary groups. They were instrumental in instigating the 2011 uprising, which resulted in the ouster of Mubarak.

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