Presidential articles finished in the working constitution

Mohamed Salamawy, spokesman for the 50 member Constituent Assembly announced Tuesday that the “articles relating to the president have been  completed and will be sent to the wording sub-committee in preparation for presentation before  the general committee.”

Six of the original articles presented by the 10 member committee were amended in late August. The 10 member committee was initially responsible to propose, amend or delete articles from the 2012 constitution.

The first amendment was to article 119, which relates to the presidential oath, to which a sentence was added: “The president will preserve the unity and integrity of [Egypt’s] land.” Al-Salamawy clarified that “this addition is to protect the Egyptian borders.”

Other amendments to the presidential articles presented on 24 August included those to article 121, which explains that the president has to choose the prime minister from the majority party within the parliament; however, the parliament has to grant its trust within 30 days of the prime minister’s appointment, and if the prime minister is refuted, the parliament appoints one of its choice.

The article also stipulates that in the case that the prime minister is chosen by the parliament, the president will be expected to appoint members of the government, which also has to wait the granting of trust by parliament within 30 days. If the trust is not granted, the president appoints a new prime minister, who thus appoints a new government. If the government gets rejected one more time, the parliament is dissolved automatically and the president orders parliamentary elections within 60 days.

Article 125 specifies that the government’s policy is collaboration between the president and prime minister, while article 127 explains that the president is the commander in chief of the “armed forces, specifying that war is only declared after consulting with the national defence council, and gaining the concurrence of two thirds of the parliament. If the parliament is dissolved, the president consults with the supreme council of the armed forces, the government.”

Article 130 explains that a presidential pardon is allowed only after consulting with the Cabinet, while the pardon cannot be absolute except after the majority of the parliament agrees upon it.

Salamawy explained that these articles are to ensure that the president does not take arbitrary decisions.

Article 133 requires the president to present his resignation to the parliament, which would be alternatively presented to the constitutional court, in the case of the parliament’s absence.

Interim president Adly Mansour released a presidential decree announcing the appointment of Refaat Dagher as a replacement to the deceased constituent assembly member, Mohamed Abdel Kader.

The replacement is now the representative for the farmers’ union. Dagher was recommended by the farmers’ union.

Former representative Abdel Kader was killed in a car crash Sunday.

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