Egypt’s president is ready to sacrifice himself to defend his constitutional legitimacy. Mohammed Morsi told television viewers on Tuesday night that “respect for legitimacy is the sole guarantee to avoid bloodshed”. He repeated the word “legitimacy” several times during the broadcast. “If the price of protecting this legitimacy is my blood, I am ready to sacrifice it,” he insisted.
Condemning the voices calling on him to step down, the president said: “The nation chose me in free and transparent elections…the nation laid down the constitution. Therefore, I am remaining to bear the responsibility laid on my shoulders.” The legitimacy of his position, said Morsi, undermines the efforts by the remnants of the discredited Mubarak regime to reverse the democratic gains of the January 2011 revolution.
The Egyptian Army issued a 48-hour ultimatum to the politicians to resolve the current deadlock otherwise it will impose its own roadmap on everyone. President Morsi’s message to the armed forces was to withdraw the ultimatum and stand by the role of the elected head of state.