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Egypt court delays ruling on parliamentary elections

Supreme Administrative Court postpones decision on suspension of parliamentary elections for second time to allow presidency time to authorise appeal

Ahram Online, Sunday 7 Apr 2013
Egyptian parliament
Workers clean inside the Egyptian parliament in Cairo (Photo: AP)

The Supreme Administrative Court (SAC) has postponed its decision on the suspension of parliamentary elections until 14 April.

It is the second time the court has postponed its verdict in the appeal case. The court was expected deliver its ruling on 24 March but postponed it until 7 April.

The verdict was delayed to enable the presidency time to authorise the appeal, which was submitted by the Egyptian State Lawsuit Authority (ESLA) on its behalf.

On 13 March, the ESLA appealed a ruling by the Administrative Court suspending the elections, which President Mohamed Morsi had called in February.

The ESLA appealed the ruling on behalf of the Egyptian president, the justice minister and the head of the Shura Council, Egypt's upper house of parliament, which temporarily holds legislative powers.

On 6 March, the SAC overturned a presidential decree calling for elections to begin on 22 April, questioning the constitutionality of the electoral law.

The High Constitutional Court (HCC) had rejected five of the electoral law's articles on 18 February. The law was referred back to the Shura Council, which partially amended the legislation without referring it back to the HCC for final approval. President Mohamed Morsi then issued a decree stating parliamentary polls would be held in late April.

An Administrative Court ruling said the Shura Council should have referred the electoral law back to the HCC before ratifying it, so as to ensure the amendments were constitutional.

On 24 March, Egypt’s office of state commissioners, a judicial body responsible for issuing non-binding recommendations to the courts, called for the appeals against the suspension of elections to be rejected.

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