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Tuesday, 5 February 2019

Proposed constitutional amendments could see El Sisi hold office until 2034

Proposed constitutional amendments could see president hold office until 2034, reconstitute Shura Council as “Council of Senators”: The constitutional amendments currently being considered at the parliament have a transitional clause that would, if passed, allow President Abdel Fattah El Sisi to run for two additional presidential terms after his current term ends in 2022, Reuters reports. This change would effectively give the president the opportunity to hold office until 2034, Al Bawaba and Reuters’ Arabic service note. The amendments would extend the presidential term to six years instead of the current four, among a host of other changes that include bringing back the Shura Council and restoring the office of the vice president.

The changes would also add a “Council of Senators” as Egypt’s upper house of parliament, effectively bringing back the Shura Council. The presidency would appoint one-third of the 250 members of the Council of Senators, Reuters says, citing a draft of the amendments it has seen. That’s in line with past practice at the Shura Council. The changes would also give the office of the president new power to appoint judges and the prosecutor general, according to the reports.

The House is pushing ahead with discussion of the potential amendments and will sit for an informational session to understand the changes and procedure, House Speaker Ali Abdel Aal said, according to Al Mal. The parliament’s general assembly will discuss today the amendments, which must be approved by a two-thirds majority in parliament before being put to a public referendum.

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