Minister of Manpower and Immigration Ahmed Hassan al-Borai said Monday that the Tahrir Square protesters’ demands were legitimate, adding that the government was “working on achieving them.”
During a seminar at the ministry headquarters, Borai said, “I am not against the right to organize sit-ins, strikes and peaceful protests, as long as they do not harm the public interest.”
Borai went on to say that Prime Minister Essam Sharaf’s cabinet is a “provisional government which derives its legitimacy from the revolution, since the Constitution has been suspended.”
In contrast, a number of Islamist public figures have expressed reservations about the protests.
Nearly a week ago, Islamist presidential hopeful Mohamed Selim al-Awa said that some of the protesters' demands were "illegitimate," calling for an end to the sit-in.
Deputy Chairman of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party Essam el-Erian said that those holding the sit-in cannot claim to represent all revolutionaries. In a press statement last week, he said, “No one can make the claim that they speak for the people.”
Regarding demands for the Egyptian Trade Union Federation to be dissolved, Borai responded, “This decision is not my hands, and must come from higher up.”
Speaking about investigations into the federation’s activities, Borai said, “The attorney general is investigating the federation’s violations related to corruption and the squandering of funds in 2009 and 2010.”
“There are also 147 court rulings invalidating the union committees affiliated with the federation that have not been implemented,” he went on to say.
Translated from the Arabic Edition