No to the parliamentary decision on the National Constitutional Assembly formation

March 22nd, 2012 by Editor

EOHR held a roundtable discussion meeting on the National Constitutional Assembly formation

The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights (EOHR) held a roundtable discussion meeting for the professors of constitutional law, political science, parliamentarians, public figures and political and human rights’ activists. The meeting tackled the formation of the National Constitutional Assembly, %50 parliamentarians and %50 non-parliamentarians. The meeting was held on March 21, 2012, 6 pm, at the headquarters of EOHR.

Within the meeting, the participants were all against the parliamentary decision on the National Constitutional Assembly formation. The participants raised the saying “No to the parliamentary decision on the National Constitutional Assembly formation.” They agreed on that the decision gives one political party the right to form the new Egyptian constitution.

Mr. Hafez Abu Seada, the head of EOHR, stated that the parliamentary decision for formation of the National Constitutional Assembly will lead to inequality of opportunities between the different national political powers. This will not comply with the international standards emphasizing on equal opportunities and the Egyptian national constitutional declaration, article 60, issued in March 2011. Each political group should take-part in the constitutional assembly in order to have the constitution that reflects the points of view of the majority. Abu Seada confirmed that the Egyptian parliament includes majority of Freedom and Justice Political Party, which means that, Muslim Brotherhood will mainly form the Egyptian assembly and draft the constitution too. The intended constitution will meet the ambition and goals of the Islamists only and the minorities will not be represented. That means the rights of the minorities within the intended constitution will not be tackled.

Professor Ashraf Balba, the consultant of Al Wafd Political Party, expressed his shock for giving this sensitive task to one political party. He stated that the parliamentary decision for forming the National Constitutional Assembly, %50 parliamentarians and %50 non-parliamentarians, does not comply with the principals of human rights and democracy.

Mrs. Farida Al Nakkash, the editor in chief of Al Ahaly Newspaper, stated that many court challenges were filed against the parliament legitimacy. So, it is not acceptable to have 50 parliamentary members in the National Constitutional Assembly before having them acquitted by the court. It is not acceptable also to give this significant task to one political power and deprive the others from drafting the Egyptian constitution. It does not comply with the principles of democracy and human rights.

Mr. Ahmed Abdel Hafez, the vice president of EOHR stated that the Egyptian political parties and civil society organizations should work together in order to pressure the parliament to cancel the National Constitution Assembly decision. The constitution is not made for the parliamentarians only it is the constitution made for all people.

Judge Samia Al Motaiem, deputy of the head of the Administrative Prosecution, said that the head of the parliament and his two deputies are enough to represent the parliamentary members in the National Constitutional assembly; which gives enough space for the representation of all the political powers and minorities.

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