Lawsuits pursuit Egypt’s religion-based parties amid ongoing parliament election
YOUM7 (Archive)

CAIRO:  Four legal suits, calling for dissolving all political parties formed on religious grounds, are being considered before the High Administrative Court of the State Council.

A challenge, filed by the lawyer Sami Mohamed al-Roubi, who called for dissolving all political parties established on religious grounds, was adjourned Saturday by the High Administrative Court to Dec. 19, Youm7 reported. The court has earlier rejected the said lawsuit.

The adjournment coincides with the start of Egypt’s parliamentary elections that kicked off for Egyptian expatriates Saturday.

A similar lawsuit, filed by Lawyer Samir Sabry, is being considered. During the October 13 session, Sabry called for putting off the parliamentary election until religious parties are dissolved.

The same court has adjourned to January 16, 2016 a third lawsuit demanding the dissolution of all political parties established after the January 2011 uprising. It was filed by lawyer Ahmed Abdel Nabi al-Menshawi.

On Sept. 12, the court accepted a lawsuit called on the Chairperson of Parties Affairs at the High Elections Commission to identify whether or not 11 political parties were established on religious grounds. However, no determination has been set yet.

The 11 parties are Al-Nour Party, Misr al-Qawyia, Buiding and Development, al-Wassat, Amal al-Gadid, fadila, Istiqlal, Asala, al-wattan, the Reform, and the Civilization.

Egypt’s 2014 constitution bans the formation of political parties. “It is illegal to form political parties on religious bases, or discrimination based on sex, or origin, or on a sectarian basis or due to geographic location,” accords to Article 74.

“No to religious parties” popular campaign has been established to dissolve all religious parties; the campaign organizers announced three days ago that they have gathered two million signatures for dissolving the parties. A number of Salafists and Islamists who abandoned their religious parties joined the campaign.

“In case that a religion-based political party dissolved after its list was elected in the new parliament, the list will be annulled and elections will be carried out again for the district the party represents, Saber Ammar, Arab Lawyer Union Secretary General Aid, told The Cairo Post Saturday.

He added electing an independent candidate will not be affected if the party he belongs was dissolved.

Since the ouster of former President Mohamed Morsi in July 3, 2013 to September, seven lawsuits calling of dissolving the religious political parties have been rejected.

The first phase of Egypt’s two-phase 2015 Parliament elections started Saturday for the expatriates worldwide, while Egyptians living in Egypt will vote Sunday and Monday in 14 governorates nationwide.

The second phase is scheduled on Nov. 22 and 23 for the domestic Egyptians and on Nov. 21 and 22 for the expats.

Egypt’s House of Representatives will comprise of 596 members, with 448 to be elected as independents, 120 through the winner-take-all party lists system, with 28 seats to be appointed by the president, HEC said.


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