Mubarak-Era Figures May Dominate Next Egypt Parliament, Warns Analyst

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A political analyst has warned that MPs who sat in the discredited 2010 parliament are likely to win at least half the seats at the next election.

“The current electoral system gives the biggest chance to those with money, power and tribal influence, and there will be few roles for those with thought, vision and clear [political] programmes,” Wahid Abdel-Meguid, of the Al-Ahram Centre for Political and Strategic Studies, said during an interview on the Dream 2 satellite channel.

The 2010 parliament under president Hosni Mubarak was condemned for being dominated by the National Democratic Party. The election’s second round was boycotted by all opposition forces, including Islamists, liberals and leftists, and marked the end of the Mubarak era as he was toppled only a few weeks later.

Abdel-Meguid dismissed concerns by some secular figures that the banned Muslim Brotherhood, whose candidate Mohamed Morsi was toppled last July, would have a presence in the next parliament.

“Talk of a Brotherhood presence in the next House of Representatives is far from reality,” he said, adding that only unknown low-ranking members of the Islamist group might make it to parliament, but it was unlikely.

He reiterated his worry that only “traditional candidates” have the money for the coming election, as a lot of money will be spent on campaigns.

He warned that faces from the 2010 parliament would make up at least half of MPs in the next parliament, and most will only be concerned with “narrow interests,” while political parties will hold no more than one third of seats.

The new parliamentary law, giving individual candidates 80 percent of parliamentary seats as opposed to political lists, has angered political parties who argue that it gives more influence to money and tribal relations.

No date has yet been set for the next parliamentary election. However, they should be held within six months of the presidential election, according to the constitution.

Source: Ahram Online

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