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Egypt's Moussa calls for dialogue on constitution changes

February 9, 2019 at 12:31 pm

Former foreign minister and presidential candidate Amr Moussa has called for national dialogue on proposed amendments to Egypt’s constitution.

“I call for a wide national dialogue on the amendments,” Moussa said in a statement on Saturday.

He said all opinions should be heard “to enrich the political life in the country and guarantee credibility to the amendments”.

Moussa, a former Arab League Secretary-General, was the chairman of a panel that drafted Egypt’s current constitution in 2014.

On Sunday, the Support Egypt Coalition, the country’s largest parliamentary bloc, lodged an official request with the parliament to amend the country’s national charter.

Supporters of Egypt’s regime have expressed support for the move, which, they say, would contribute to the country’s “stability”.

Opponents of the move, by contrast, including many journalists, say the proposed changes — if implemented — would “set the country back years”.

READ: In Egypt, ‘political prisoners aren’t even recognised as humans’ 

Notably, opposition member of parliament Haitham al-Hariri published a draft of the proposed amendments that include an interim article that allows incumbent President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi to remain in power for 2034.

Al-Sisi was elected in the same year the new charter was ratified — and one year after leading a military coup against his predecessor, Mohamed Morsi.

In June of last year, al-Sisi was re-elected to a second presidential term, which is set to expire in 2022.

According to the constitution in its current form, al-Sisi cannot run for a third term in office.

The presidency has yet to comment on the proposed constitutional adjustments, but al-Sisi has said in previous televised remarks that he had no intention to run for a third term.