Civil forces declare plans for political roadmap

Secular political forces are tirelessly working to present plans for a new political roadmap, in the hours before a military ultimatum given to President Mohamed Morsi to leave power expires.

The Tamarod campaign, which claims it collected 22 million signatures to withdraw confidence from Morsi, has called on protesters to gather in front of the presidential residency. The popular campaign that called for June 30 demonstrations called for protesters to gather at 3 pm, one and a half hours before the ultimatum ends.

The campaign has also called on the Republican Guards, an army unit responsible for protecting presidential palaces, to arrest Morsi.

“The victory moment has come, Egyptians,” said Tamarod spokesman Mahmoud Badr in a press conference on Wednesday.

“The president lacks legitimacy, and we have to protect the street’s legitimacy. We do not fear terrorists or the US Ambassador that continues to play its role. Morsi himself has no problem with US pressures that serve Israeli interests because he controls Hamas and leaves Sinai to become a terrorist hub,” he added.

The campaign did not announce any possible future roadmaps. AFP reported that it is participating in a meeting with opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei and Defense Minister Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, but MENA quoted military sources denying this meeting. Not withstanding these denials, it was later confirmed that a meeting between the military, civil powers, Al-Azhar, the Church and Salafi Nour Party did indeed take place.

Vice president of the liberal Free Egypt Party and member of the National Salvation Front, the main secular opposition bloc, Margaret Azer told Mada Masr that the secular forces imagine the military playing a central role in running the roadmap.

“We do not want the military to commit the same mistake the Armed Forces committed in the previous transitional period when they enabled the Brotherhood to win parliamentary elections based on an unconstitutional law which led to the dissolution of parliament a few months later,” she said.

“Of course this mismanagement hobbled the road to democracy, and further deepened political and partisan polarization,” Azer added.

Azer said that a technocrat government is urgently needed to address the needs of the Egyptian people. “This government should work on improving issues of the energy crisis, better public services and dealing with the economic turmoil.”

“This government should be headed by someone who enjoys public support and consensus, then a group of highly-specialized constitutional experts should look into the disputed articles of the constitution with coordination from all political forces,” she explained.

The Armed Forces should be supervising these arrangements without direct intervention, and without leaning towards certain political forces over the others, Azer added.

AD