Egyptian Opposition Parties Call On Citizens To Reject Constitutional Amendments To Extend Sisi’s Tenure
A coalition of Egyptian opposition parties has called on citizens to reject constitutional amendments approved last month by parliament that would allow President Abdel al-Fatah al-Sisi to remain in power beyond the existing two-term limit. Egyptian lawmakers, many of them Sisi allies, overwhelmingly voted in favor of a series of changes that many view as an effort to codify the military’s role in politics. The Civil Democratic Movement, which includes secular and left-leaning parties, denounced the proposed amendments, claiming their approval in a national referendum that is expected to take place in the coming weeks would create “dictatorship and autocracy.” Many of these parties were established in the aftermath of the 2011 Arab Spring uprising that ousted longtime strongman Hosni Mubarak and raised hopes that democracy could take hold in the Arab world’s most populous nation. Sisi was voted into office in 2014 – a year after spearheading the overthrow of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Mohamed Morsi, who replaced Mubarak – and re-elected in 2018 to another four-year term. Right activists have criticized his government’s crackdown on Islamists and other political opponents, and accused him of stifling dissent by limiting freedom of expression and allegedly imprisoning tens of thousands of people.