Friday, March 18, 2011

Full text of Egypt's constitutional amendments

The following is the full text in English of the proposed constitutional amendments which Egyptians will vote 'yes' or 'no' on in Saturday's referendum. Translation by the Egyptian governmentof the statement by the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces issued Saturday 26/2/2011:

Article 75: The elected president must be Egyptian and has Egyptian parents and enjoys civil and political rights. Any of his parents should not have obtained the nationality of any other country. He should not be married to a non-Egyptian and his age must not be less than 40 years.

Article 76: The president is elected through direct public secret ballot. The nomination for presidency must be supported by at least 30 elected members of the People's Assembly or Shura Council, or at least 30,000 eligible voters in at least 15 governorates so that the number of supporters in any of these governorates should not be less than one thousand.

In all cases, support should not be for more than one candidate.

Any political party whose members obtained at least one seat by voting in the People's Assembly or Shura Council can nominate one of its members for presidency.

A judicial commission, called the Presidential Elections Commission, is to supervise the presidential elections starting from the announcement of candidacy until the results of voting.

The committee is to be chaired by the head of the Supreme Constitutional Court and comprises the head of the Cairo Court of Appeal, the eldest Supreme Constitutional Court deputy, the eldest head of the Court of Cassation deputy and the eldest deputy of the State Council.

The commission's decisions are to be final and binding and non-liable to any appeals. They must not be halted or cancelled. The law is to define the other powers of the commission.

The Presidential Elections Commission is to form committees that supervise the balloting and counting as stated in Article No. 88.

The presidential elections organization bill is to be referred to the Supreme Constitutional Court to decide whether it complies with the Constitution.

The Supreme Constitutional Court is to announce its decision within 15 days of the date of reference. If the court decides that one or more articles are unconstitutional, its decision shall be binding. In all cases, the court's decision is to be binding. The decision is to be published in the official gazette three days after its issuance.

Article 77: It states that the presidential term is four years. The president can be only re-elected for one more term.

Article 88: The law specifies preconditions for eligible People's Assembly members and sets the rulings of elections and referendum.

Article 93: The Supreme Constitutional Court is in charge of deciding the validity of membership of the People's Assembly MPs.

Challenges are lodged with the court within a period that does not exceed 30 days since the announcement of election results. The court passes a ruling on the challenges within 90 days as of the time of receiving the challenges.

The membership of any MP is considered null as of the date of notifying the PA with the court ruling.

Article 139: The president of the republic must appoint, within 60 days at most since his assumption of power, one or more vice president and set his powers. If the need arises to relieve the VP from his post, he must appoint another.

Preconditions and accountability rules applicable to the president of the republic are the same for vice presidents.

Article 148: The president of the republic declares a state of emergency according to the law. The declaration must be referred to the People's Assembly within seven days since its announcement to issue a resolution on this score.

If the announcement was made while the parliament is in recess, it is required that the parliament convenes immediately to look into the announcement while observing the period mentioned in the previous article.

If the parliament is dissolved, the issue is referred to the new parliament at its first session. The issue must pass with the majority approval.

In all cases, the declaration of a state of emergency must not be for more than six months that must not be extended except after the approval of the people in a public referendum.

Article 179: Cancelled

Article 189 last para added:

The president of the republic has the powers, after the approval of the Cabinet, and also half of the People's Assembly and Shura Council have the powers to ask for issuing a new constitution. A Constituent Assembly of 100 members, to be mostly elected by the two houses of parliament at a joint meeting, undertakes outlining the new constitution at a period of time not more than six months since its formation. The blueprint is referred by the president of the republic within 15 days of its drawing to the people for referendum. The new constitution is applicable as of the date of approval by the people in the referendum.

Article 189 bis

Non-appointed members of the first People's Assembly and Shura Council convene to announce the results of the referendum on constitutional amendments for choosing the constituent assembly in charge of outlining the new constitution within six months of their election. This all comes in line with the last para of article 189.

Article 189 bis (I)

The first Shura Council exercises its powers after announcing the results of the referendum on constitutional amendments.

The president of the republic takes over, immediately after his election, completing the formation of the Council with appointing one third of its members. The appointment should be for completing the term of the Council according to the law.


  1. Where is a 'Bill of Rights?"

  2. Where is (1) Freedom to assemble, (2)Freedom of speech, (3)Freedom of religion, (4)freedom of the Press and (5)freedom to petition

  3. C'mon anybody really expected a democracy in Egypt? It's going to be Suni's Iran...

  4. First of all, this is not the entire constitution, secondly, the "Bill of Rights" was not in the original U.S. Constitution to begin with, and also, with possible presidential candidates such as ElBaradei in line for the Presidency, I believe Egypt stands a very good chance of being a fully-functioning democracy.

  5. Victory is correct. The text contained in this blog post is only the 8 proposed amendments to the Egyptian Constitution which Egyptians voted on in a referendum on March 19. It is not the full constitution, although I can provide you with a link to the full text of the constitution.

    @Anonymous 2, it's highly unlikely that Egypt will turn into anything reminiscent of Iran. It's much more likely to follow the Turkish model, with the army guaranteeing a civilian government.