TIMEP Brief: Potential Changes to Egypt’s Presidential Term Limits

Source: The Tahrir Institute for Middle East Policy

Author(s): The Tahrir Institute for Middle East Policy

Original Link: https://timep.org/reports-briefings/timep-briefs/timep-brief-potential-changes-to-egypts-presidential-term-limits/

Summary: Egypt’s 2014 constitution establishes that the president is elected for a period of four years, renewable only once. Despite constitutional provisions stating articles on re-election of the president “may not be amended, unless the amendment brings more guarantees,” calls have persisted to amend the constitution and extend presidential term limits. On February 3, 2019, a coalition of representatives submitted a proposal for constitutional amendments that would extend presidential terms to six years and allow presidents to be reelected once (i.e., to serve a total of two terms), allowing the current president to be eligible for reelection under the new rules, and to grant the military authority to “protect the constitution and democracy.” If the amendments are approved, Sisi’s current term would end as scheduled in 2022, but he would be eligible to run for reelection in that year and in 2028.  These amendments are packaged among other apparently liberal and progressive amendments that include improved representation for minorities. These initiatives raise significant concerns about constitutionally protected democratic principles, rights, and freedoms, and risk further enshrining a system of authoritarian rule, and they have engendered staunch opposition from Egypt’s civil society and segments of the general public.

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