Egyptians are preparing to stage another million-man march to pressure the country’s junta into passing a law that will prohibit members of the ousted ex-ruler Hosni Mubarak’s regime from running for president.
Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood and the Salafist groups have called for the mass rally in Cairo’s Liberation (Tahrir) Square on Friday, and demanded the “protection of the revolution” in statements on their websites.
The country’s parliament on Thursday ratified a bill that prohibits members of the ousted Mubarak regime from standing for public office.
The law, yet to be approved by the ruling military council, will disqualify members of the former regime, including ex-intelligence chief Omar Suleiman and former prime minister, Ahmed Shafiq, from running in the upcoming presidential elections.
Omar Suleiman, who served as the head of Egypt’s General Intelligence Department for 18 years, registered as one of the presidential hopefuls last week.
Many consider Suleiman a favorite of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF), which has ruled Egypt since Mubarak’s ouster in February 11, 2011.
The Muslim Brotherhood’s candidate Khairat al-Shater has said that Suleiman’s presidential bid could spark a second revolution in the country.
“I consider his entry an insult to the revolution and the Egyptian people,” al-Shater said on Sunday, hours after Suleiman filed his candidacy.
He also likened Suleiman’s candidacy to an effort “to steal the revolution”.
Egyptians will go to the polls late next month to elect a new president. It will be the country’s first such race since the collapse of the former Mubarak regime.