Morsi Gets Temporary Approval To Enact 'Minimal' Legislation

Article Summary
Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi will exercise legislative powers in the absence of the People’s Assembly. Morsi has promised to do so only minimally, with the approval of political leaders, report Ibtissam Taalab, Mahmoud Ramzy and Ahmad Allam. Morsi is expected to reform the electoral law ahead of parliamentary elections.

A number of political party leaders and politicians have agreed that President Mohammed Morsi's power to legislate until the parliamentary elections are held is normal and legal, provided that he exercises such power as little as possible. The next election date will be determined in a maximum period of three months, until a law for elections is established in a consensual and constitutional way that protects the People's Assembly from dissolution.

Some called on Morsi to exercise his legislative powers away from the Muslim Brotherhood Guidance Bureau. Others deemed these powers a remedy for the mistakes made by the Military Council during the transitional period.

Rifaat Al-Saeed, head of the National Progressive Unionist Party, said that Morsi is entitled to preserve his legislative power, but he has to improve his decisions and be independent from the guidance bureau of the Brotherhood. Otherwise, he will embarrass himself in front of the Egyptian people and he will turn into a new Pharaoh, but "with a beard, ” Saeed said.

Hossam al-Khawly, assistant secretary of the Wafd Party, said his party supports this decision, but called on Morsi not to make important and fateful decisions unless they are made with the participation of all political and community forces, pointing out that the attribution of legislative power to the president is better than assigning it to the Shura Council, which had not been elected to fulfill such a role.

Abdel-Ghaffar Shokr, a leader in the Socialist Popular Alliance Party, said that the party leaders discussed the issue of legislation in their last meeting with the president, and suggested that legislative power be moved to the Constituent Assembly tasked with establishing the constitution, or that it remains in the hands of Morsi. The president promised at the time that he would exercise the least possible legislative power in order to make necessary legislation such as the Law of the People's Assembly elections.

Essam Sultan, vice president of the Center Party, said that he agreed that legislative power would be in the hands of the President, but that he should exercise this power only narrowly until the new parliamentary elections are held.

"The president is entitled to exercise legislative power in the absence or dissolution of the parliament, and this will address the transitional-phase errors which left legislative power in the hands of the Military Council, causing defective laws, most notably the electoral law of the People's Assembly," Sultan added.

Mustafa Najjar, a member of the dissolved parliament, said that the president's preservation of his powers was expected until the new parliamentary elections are held. He added his desire that Morsi use this right narrowly until the completion of the constitution and the start of the first phase of parliamentary elections, pointing out that normally, the constitution is established and then elections are held on the basis of a new law that determineds whether the elections will follow the party-list or individual system.

Found in: people’s assembly, muslim brotherhood, muslim, morsi, military council, military, legislative power, egypt, constituent assembly

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