Egypt's parliament would swear in President Sisi for second term in early June: House spokesman

Gamal Essam El-Din , Saturday 31 Mar 2018

Egypt's incumbent President Sisi, the likely winner of the 2018 presidential elections, will be sworn in early June in line with the constitution

El-Sisi at Parliament
File Photo: Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi addresses Egyptian Parliament (Photo: AP)

Egypt parliament's spokesperson Salah Hassaballah told reporters on Saturday that President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi will be sworn in for his second term as president early in June in accordance with the constitution.

"Early June will signal a new presidential term and as a result the elected president will come to parliament to be sworn in,”Hassaballah said.

Egypt's National Elections Authority (NEA), which was in charge of supervising last week's presidential election, is scheduled to announce the official results of the poll Monday.

Early indicators show that incumbent President El-Sisi, who ran for another four-year term, is expected to win by a landslide.

Al-Ahram newspaper said on Friday that the turnout results are expected to be a little higher than those of 2014, when 23.7 million Egyptians voted for El-Sisi.

"In this poll, which was held between 26 and 28 March, the turnout is expected to go up to 25 million, with around 23 million (97 percent) Egyptians having voted for El-Sisi,” Al-Ahram reported.

Semi-official figures, said Al-Ahram, also show that the only other candidate, the head of the Ghad Party Moussa Mostafa Moussa, gained 750,000 votes (3 percent).

Salah Fawzi, a constitutional law professor at Mansoura University and a member of the government-affiliated Legislative Reform Committee, said on Friday that "as Egypt's 2014 presidential election was officially announced on 3 June, the current term of the incumbent president will officially expire on the second of June, and so President El-Sisi is expected to be sworn in early June.”

"There will be coordination between the elected president and parliament on which day he will be sworn in,” Fawzi said.

NEA spokesperson Mahmoud El-Sherif said the official results of the three-day presidential election will be announced on 2 April or next Monday.

"Appeals against the results can be lodged with the Supreme Administrative Court within 48 hours, and a final ruling on these should be issued within 10 days, or 14 April, at the latest," El-Sherif said.

"While no complaints have so far been filed against vote-counting operations, the NEA is still receiving results of the election from its affiliated offices in Egypt's provincial governorates," El-Sherif said.

"There will be complete and detailed figures on the number of votes, who voted the most in this poll, and turnout rates," El-Sherif said.

Fawzi explained that while Article 231 of the constitution stipulates that a new presidential term begins the day the result of the election is announced (3 June 2014), Article 144 states that the elected president must be sworn in before the House of Representatives – Egypt's lower house parliament.”

"This will be the first time an elected president will be sworn in before parliament in line with Egypt's 2014 constitution,” Fawzi said.

However, Fawzi said that while Article 25 of the Local Administration Law (law 43/1979) states that provincial governors must submit resignations following the end of a presidential term, there is no constitutional or legislative article that imposes the same stipulation on the government.

"This means that the current government may or may not submit its resignation following the end of the first presidential term," he argued.

Many MPs said on Saturday that they expect that the current government – led by Prime Minister Sherif Ismail – will submit its resignation following the end of the first presidential term.

Alaa Abed, head of parliament's human rights committee, said in a statement on Saturday that "Egypt is in desperate need of a new government."

"We need fighters, not cabinet ministers and provincial governors with trembling hands," Abed said, adding that "the current government of the prime minister includes a considerable number of cabinet ministers who were not up to the people's expectations, and they should be replaced by new ones who can deliver on reforms and improved services in the second presidential term.”

Ahmed Ismail, a member of parliament's defence and national security committee, said "there should be a sweeping cabinet reshuffle that should include no less than half of the government's cabinet ministers."

Mohamed Abdallah Zein, deputy chairman of parliament's Transport Committee, said "the current government led by Prime Minister Sherif Ismail has done all it can in the first presidential term, and it should be changed in the second term.”

"This government has lost its shine and there should a new one with young faces,” Zein said.

Ashraf Reheim, an MP affiliated with the Nile Delta governorate of Beheira, said "in the second presidential term, Egypt needs a new government with a new mentality.”

"As the government of Sherif Ismail shouldered the burden of implementing the IMF's package of harsh economic reforms in the first term, it is important that this government be changed to reflect a new term based on compensating citizens who can no longer afford the costs of another wave of difficult reforms," Reheim said. 

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