Hanafi: Specific Guarantees Required to Safeguard Presidential Election Integrity

Hanafi: Specific Guarantees Required to Safeguard Presidential Election Integrity

The Egyptian People’s Assembly (PA) Constitutional and Legislative Affairs Committee demanded amendment of non-challenge Article 21 of the Constitutional Declaration prohibiting appeals of decisions made by the High Judicial Elections Commission (HJEC), so the first elected President would not face claims of constitutional invalidity.

The PA Committee discussed the proposal of a draft law submitted by MP Jamal Hanafi, a member of the parliamentary Commission of the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP); and independent MP Mohamed Alomda, to amend provisions of Law 47 of 2005 on the organization of presidential elections, as amended by Decree No. 12 of 2012. The PA Committee stated that this article has no parallel in World constitutions.

For his part, Justice Omar Sharif, Assistant Minister of Justice for Legislative Affairs, that there is no urgency to amend this law, especially as the HJEC has announced the opening of the nomination process on the tenth of March, and there is no time for such amendments; also the said law was prepared by SCAF; reviewed by the Ministry of Justice; and presented in its final form to the Supreme Constitutional Court, which in turn made several amendments to its provisions.

Sharif explained that in order to incorporate new amendments to the law, once again, they must be presented to the Supreme Constitutional Court in compliance with the Constitutional Declaration, and this may well prove a lengthy process.

Further, in a statement to Ikhwanweb, Jamal Hanafi, a member of the FJP Legal Committee, commented on the issue saying, "It is our right as an legislative authority to call for such amendments; but if there causes a lengthy delay in consideration of these amendments, we do not need them urgently just now. However, we are determined the HJEC for Presidential Elections must give clear and specific guarantees about the presidential elections in order to achieve the required integrity, fairness and transparency".