El-Katatni calls on El-Hariri to resign from Parliament

Ahram Online, Sunday 22 Apr 2012

Socialist MP Abul-Ezz El-Hariri says Parliament illegitimate and should be dismissed, provokes calls from parliamentary speaker for him to resign his seat

Egypt's parliamentary speaker Mohamed Saad El-Katatni has called on presidential contender Abul-Ezz El-Hariri to resign from Parliament after he insisted the legislative body was "illegitimate."

El-Hariri, running on the Socialist Popular Alliance Party's (SPAP) ticket, used a TV appearance Saturday to express his view that "it is crucial to dismiss the People's Assembly and Shura Council since they are built on illegitimate grounds."

MPs called on El-Hariri to clarify his comments during a People's Assembly session Sunday.

El-Hariri said the comments were his "personal opinion" but did not elaborate further. El-Katatni called for El-Hariri's resignation during the debate.

This is not the first time El-Hariri, known for his critical stands, has described Parliament as illegitimate.

A well-known member of parliament, socialist and labour activist over the past 50 years, El-Hariri is a presidential candidate with a long record of fighting for social justice.

The Socialist Popular Alliance Party nominated El-Hariri to be its presidential candidate on 7 March 2012, and he announced his candidacy that night on the Al-Arabiya satellite TV station.

Presidential elections will take place on 23 and 24 May, and the president will be named on 21 June after a runoff voting round on 16 and 17 June.

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