Al-Shater Outlines Egyptian Renaissance Project at First Press Conference
Whilst Khairat Al-Shater, the Muslim Brotherhood and Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) candidate, confirmed that he is racing against time to bring about total renaissance, reform and rejuvenation, he warned that the challenging issues of this homeland require a comprehensive solution and cooperation and participation by all Egyptians.
At the beginning of an introductory interview for his election campaign, with mass media and journalists in Cairo, Monday afternoon, Al-Shater pointed that both he personally and his team are focused on a renaissance project that both the FJP and the Muslim Brotherhood have been working on for some time.
That project comprises two core points: to draw lessons from the experiences of all successful countries such as Italy, Germany, South Africa, India and Norway; and to cooperate with those countries in the economic field.
Al-Shater stressed that, if he wins the election, he will be dedicated to serving the people. He added that a solid renaissance project needs tremendous efforts and participation of all.
Further, while Al-Shater vowed to “energize and motivate and engage all Egyptian people in the building of modern Egypt, since it is not feasible for any single party or faction, however powerful, to build Egypt alone", he pointed that rebuilding the homeland and launching the renaissance project do require tremendous efforts and unique innovations.
Al-Shater also stressed that he is determined to seek out Egypt’s interests, to serve and contribute to its construction and true renaissance, where that interest is in harmony with a commitment to high principles, pointing out that Egyptian political life had been brutally bulldozed over the past decades because of the Mubarak era.
He explained that, “The challenge for the renaissance project is to restore to the people of Egypt their proper status among the world’s leading nations. There are three phases involved in the renaissance project (short, medium and long) that will begin all at the same time, from the first day – in parallel, especially as the extent of the damage caused by the corrupt Mubarak regime is evidently tremendous.
“Egypt’s domestic and foreign debt amounts to one trillion and 140 billion Egyptian pounds ($190 billion). And in light of current deficit figures, we must rely on the revitalization of domestic and foreign investments. However, this will not mean a return to maximizing the role of privatization and the private sector so much as a commitment to protecting the homeland and the people.
Furthermore, Egypt’s most likely presidential contender said, "The Brotherhood and the party and I personally, we all are devoted to the service of Egypt’s renaissance project. And we are certainly not in conflict with anyone".
Al-Shater expressed understanding of slander campaigns waged against him by the media in the current phase of the transition, adding: "I am proud of all the media, even those who attack me".
He emphasized that he is ready and willing to communicate with everyone, but tends to talk about what could be practically and objectively built upon, and does not like irrelevant stories and anecdotes. He said that he directs the bulk of his focus on work, stressing that he has not taken any negative stance with regard to the media, which is the fourth branch of government and an important tool for building modern Egypt.
Moreover, Al-Shater added that, “The fall of Mubarak does not mean we have established a political system that keeps pace with the post-revolutionary era”, pointing out that the State was in an absurd and abhorrent state of confrontation with society at large under Mubarak.
Pointing that Egypt’s security system is weak, and requires a huge amount of urgent work to restore safety and security to the Egyptian street, and that law enforcement requires a strong security system, Al-Shater stressed that improving the economic environment requires stable political and security systems.
In response to comments by journalists and media professionals, Al-Shater confirmed that he represents all Egyptians and not any specific movement or party, "That is why I submitted my resignation from the Brotherhood’s Guidance Bureau following my nomination to run in the presidential elections".
Al-Shater also said, "We strongly reject the re-production of the former regime, as witnessed in the nomination of Omar Suleiman. We believe that the candidacy of Shafiq (former Prime Minister) and Suleiman is an insult to the revolution".
In conclusion, Al-Shater asserted that, ultimately, the people are the decision-maker, and must be given the opportunity to choose between good alternatives. He also stressed that both the Brotherhood and the FJP fully support the new institutions elected by the people.