Skip to comments.Egypt judges up political stakes with referendum boycott
Posted on 12/02/2012 3:46:03 PM PST by Ernest_at_the_Beach
Egyptian judges refused on Sunday to oversee a referendum due in less than two weeks on a controversial new constitution drafted by an Islamist-dominated panel, sharply upping the stakes of a standoff with the Islamist president.
The announcement by the Judges Club, which represents judges nationwide, came after Egypt's top court began an open-ended strike in the face of a mass protest outside the courthouse by supporters of President Mohamed Morsi opposed to their ruling on the legality of the panel that drew up the draft charter.
Judges traditionally supervise elections in Egypt, giving them a seal of legitimacy, but they have been openly at loggerheads with Morsi since he issued a decree last month placing both his decisions and the charter panel beyond their scrutiny.
The standoff has polarised Egyptian opinion and sparked the biggest political crisis since Morsi assumed power in June as the country's first ever civilian president and its first elected leader since the overthrow of veteran strongman Hosni Mubarak in a popular uprising early last year.
"It has been agreed by all the judges of Egypt and the Judges Clubs outside the capital not to supervise a referendum on the draft constitution and to boycott it," the head of the Judges Club, Ahmed al-Zind, said.
The charter, adopted by the panel on Friday in the face of a boycott by liberals and Christians, has been criticised for paving the way to a strict interpretation of Islamic law and for failing to secure key rights.
It is due to be put to a referendum on December 15 under an accelerated timetable for a transition to a new political system being championed by Morsi and his Islamist backers in what they say is an effort to turn the page on the turmoil since Mubarak's overthrow.
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Unlike our eunuch Supremes.
Wouldn’t be refreshing to see Hillary or her able assistant Huma jump onto this site and offer an explanation..../sarc
My guess is a bunch of judges will be made an example of and the rest will fall into line or will be put in pits. The MB just doesn’t seem to have a developed patience gene for those who would disagree.
As I said on another post, I’m surprised the judiciary has lasted this long. Dictators taking over a state formerly governed by the rule of law usually get rid of the judges first. Although in this case, Morsi first purged the military, so maybe he’s just gotten around to the judges.
Mubarak definitely did a lot of things non-judicially, but at least in theory, Egypt was governed by the rule of law and had a legislative system where the law was produced by representatives and its legitimacy was enforced or determined by the judiciary.
One of the problems that Murbarak faced, of course, is that Islamists don’t give a darn about the judiciary, and since they were his main enemies, he used extra-judicial means in dealing with them. This was not a good thing, but it didn’t interfere with the judiciary and ordinary law very much.
Sharia, on the other hand, wants it all.
We’re more likely to see Hillary on the Supreme Court than on FreeRepublic.