Egypt's Sisi ratifies law establishing National Electoral Commission

Ahram Online , Monday 7 Aug 2017

File photo of President Abdel-Fatah El-Sisi. (Photo: Reuters)

Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi ratified a law on Monday for the creation of a National Electoral Commission (NEC) to supervise the nation's elections and referendums, state-run news agency MENA reported.

According to the 37-article law, which was passed on 21 June, the NEC will be an independent authority with sole responsibility for the holding of general elections and referendums in Egypt.

"Its duties will range from reviewing national voter lists on a periodical basis, making sure they are clean and free of any irregularities, to holding polls and announcing results," according to a report by parliament's legislative reform committee.

The NEC will be headed by the head of the Court of Cassation, as stipulated by the law.

"The NEC's board will include 10 members, comprising one head [and nine] senior judges affiliated with the Court of Cassation, the Court of Appeals, the State Council, the State Cases Authority, and the Administrative Prosecution Authority," said the report.

"All will be selected by the Higher Council for Judges and endorsed by the president of the republic," it added.

"Their term of office will be a non-renewable six years and they must be six years under the retirement age when they join NEC's board."

The NEC, along with the Egyptian government, are set to begin preparing for Egypt's upcoming presidential elections, which are set for May 2018.

On 28 July, Prime Minister Sherif Ismail held a meeting with the ministers of justice and parliamentary affairs, as well as a representative of the finance ministry, to review the steps necessary for the NEC to supervise the elections, in accordance with articles 208, 209 and 210 of the constitution, according to a cabinet statement.

A number of political parties announced last week that they would support El-Sisi for a second term in office, though El-Sisi has not officially announced that he would run for a second four-year term.

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