Tangi Salaün: “The Final Straight – Keep to the Right”
Only a few more days before we know the composition of the People’s Assembly, the lower chamber of the Egyptian parliament. Or, to put it more bluntly, before we know if the Muslim Brotherhood have an overall majority, and Islamists of all stripes hold more than two-thirds of the seats (which represents a blocking majority on constitutional votes).
The first round of the third and final phase of the legislative elections began yesterday and ends today, Wednesday. It’s then that we’ll know the definitive result of the proportional voting by list (two-thirds of the seats at the Assembly). Only a handful of first-past-the-post seats will remain to be allocated in the second round in a week’s time.
For the Muslim Brothers, this is the moment of truth. It’s been eighty-four years since the Brotherhood was founded by Hassan al-Banna, inventor of political Islam. It is now about to see its “ripe-fruit-falls-from-the-tree” strategy bear fruit. After the first two phases, the Liberty and Justice Party (PLJ) that it set up for the elections gained 51% of seats, according to the projections for voting by list. One final push and the Muslim Brothers will be in a position to dictate their law. Or to choose with whom they will govern – if the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces gives them the chance. The head of the CSAF, Marshal Tantawi, said again this weekend that he would hand over power to the civilians on June 30th, after the presidential election.
The big question-mark here hangs over the Salafists, runners-up to the Brotherhood after the first two phases. The role of these fundamentalists in the commission charged with writing the new Constitution, as well as in a possible coalition government, and the influence they can derive from this in society, will go a long way to shaping the future of Egypt, both politically and economically.
To go further
Tangi Salaün, 39-year-old native of Brittany, is a journalist. Having lived in Cairo for fifteen years, he’s currently covering Egyptian news for Le Figaro, L’Express and RTL, but also for Le Temps in Geneva and Le Soir in (Brussels). He is also the co-author of two books, The Egypte of Tahrir (Le Seuil, May 2011) with journalist Claude Guibal, an Egypt, the beginnings of freedom (Michel Lafon, October 2011) with the Egyptian blogger Shahinaz Abdel Salam.
Twitter : @TangiSalaunblog comments powered by Disqus