- Middle East/North Africa
According to the Constitution, the Supreme Constitutional Court does not have the right to review amendments to the new Parliamentary Elections Law, Shura Council MP Taher Abdel Mohsen declared on Thursday.
The law governs the upcoming House of Representatives elections slated to begin on 22 April.
The recently ratified Constitution stipulates that the SCC may not review laws after the Shura Council has amended them, argued Abdel Mohsen, the head of the council’s Constitutional and Legislative Affairs Committee.
The SCC had objected to several articles in the draft versino of the law and submitted a report to the Shura Council. The council approved the court’s recommendations and then passed the law.
Since then, controversy around the law has grown, as some have claimed the council did not accurately include the SCC’s recommendations, and accused the law of being unconstitutional.
Abdel Mohsen insisted that the Constitution does not force the Shura Council to adhere exactly to the SCC’s resolutions. The SCC only has the right to study and make recommendations on laws pertaining to presidential elections, political rights, parliamentary elections and local council elections before they are issued, while any other laws are subject to review after they are issued. No law may be reviewed both before and after being passed, Abdel Mohsen said.
The Constitutional also does not compel the Shura Council to allow the SCC to review how the parliamentary body implemented the court’s recommendations into a draft law, meaning the court cannot ensure the implementation of its resolutions.
Opposition parties have announced they would boycott the elections to protest against the new law, as well as the lack of guarantees for the integrity of the electoral process.
Edited translation from MENA