A number of politicians and lawyers condemned the statements of the head of parliament, Dr. Fathy Sorour, in which he said about the “parallel parliament”: “I am worried for them, as Article 86 of the Penal Code criminalizes them because this is considered a gathering that threatens democracy.”
Constitutional expert, Essam El-Islambouli, said that the Code of Procedures is a general law and the law of the State Council is a special law and the special restricts the public. The law of the State Council provided that the administrative judiciary decides on the appeals against its rulings. The Constitutional Court has stated earlier that the State Council is an independent judicial body which is specialized in reviewing its rulings, not the Court of Cessation.
He added that the saying “the Council owns its decisions” does not apply to the validity of the election procedures. The Penal Court, especially Article 86, does not, by any means, apply to the people’s parliament, which announced its goals and called for the independence of the judiciary and for constitutional reforms which could transform Egypt into a democratic state. This could be done by applying these laws that are guaranteed by the law and the constitution including demonstrations and calling for peaceful civil disobedience. The group did not call for terrorism or violence.
Alaa Abdel Monem, media spokesman for the parallel parliament, stressed that the statements of Dr. Sorour do not apply to the people’s parliament, especially as this specific article is related to pursuing secret and terrorist organizations, unlike the basic goals of the people’s parliament which stems from the trust and confidence of Egyptian citizens.
Abdel Monem stressed that Egyptian law and the Constitution gives every citizen the right to discuss the laws which are reviewed by the council. Dealing with it legally through the Egyptian and international judiciary will be done by the people’s parliament.
He also pointed out that according to the current laws, there is no possibility to prosecute the current parallel parliament; however, it is expected to design a law by the parliament, whose legitimacy is contested, to prosecute the people’s parliament.