New Delhi, December 8 The Egyptian political party Al Horreya Wal Adala (Freedom and Justice Party) has decided to withdraw from the Advisory Council of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF). Dr Mohamed Saad Katatni, Secretary General of Al Horreya Wal Adala emphasized in Cairo that their initial decision to participate in the Council was based on the understanding that it was to be an advisory body to assist the SCAF in the management of public affairs during the transitional period, and to give advice and opinion on urgent legislation during this stage and until the completion of parliamentary elections.
According to the Ikhwanweb, in a press statement, Dr Katatni today stated at Cairo that after participating in the first sessions of discussions and as a result of several press releases, it transpired that the tasks to be undertaken by the Advisory Council were far beyond what we thought to be its mission, and represented a derogation of the legislative institution and interference in the preparation of the Constituent Assembly which would draft Egypt’s new Constitution. This forced us to withdraw from participation in this Council, he said.
Dr Katatni added that the FJP believed that the next stage required respect for the will of the people and cooperation between all parties and stakeholders, especially between the military and the interim government and the elected Parliament, to take Egypt smoothly through the democratic transition period and onto the shores of safety and stability.
Meanwhile in another statement, Al Horreya Wal Adala extended its thanks and appreciation to the Egyptian people for their dazzling civilized performance in the first phase of the parliamentary elections, and urged them to continue to turnout positively in the following phases. It also called upon all parties to avoid the negative issues that marred the first phase, thus giving the world a great example to proudly record in Egyptian history.
The party emphasized that its primary focus was on the future and pushing forth the wheels of democracy. The party stressed that it withdrew from SCAF’s Advisory Council because it reopened the subject of forming the Constituent Assembly which would draft the Constitution, starting with an idea of a procedural law, then development of ‘guiding’ criteria, which revealed the insistence of certain parties to impose such criteria on the upcoming Parliament and therefore, the Constituent Assembly, which was confirmed by some media statements.
The party emphasizes that a collision with the SCAF was out of the question, and that the party considered that the difference in views was no reason for confrontation. The party appreciated the importance of close cooperation, in this stage, between the military and the interim government and the elected Parliament.
Furthermore, the party reiterated its commitment to constitutional principles that reflected the national conscience, as issued and confirmed by the party – in the Democratic Alliance Code of Honour – and as emphasized by the party through the approval of the Al-Azhar document. Those are the same principles as mentioned in the current constitutional declaration, and in the first four Chapters of the Constitution of 71. This confirmed them as expression of the collective Egyptian national conscience, and that they enjoyed a general public consensus which would help to speed the completion of the new Constitution that reflected the Egyptian people in its entirety.
The party emphasized that the Constituent Assembly must be representative of all the Egyptian people, factions, communities and stakeholders, something which would enable it to draft a Constitution that truly reflected the entire nation, so the people would accept it for themselves and approve it out of their own free will.