Not that a constitution which is said to be merely inspired by Sharia’s supremacist and authoritarian principles would be good news. But the Salafists, that supposed Tiny Minority of Extremists that has gotten between a quarter and a third of the vote between the first two rounds of Egypt’s elections, intend to make sure Sharia is not merely the basis of legislation, but features in its contents. Indeed, both Islamic parties’ strength in numbers ensures that.
A democracy is only as good as the values that inform its participants. “Salafi party forms committee to influence constitution,” by Hamdi Dabash Mohamed Abu Elenen for Al Masri Al Youm, December 26:
The Nour Party has formed a legal committee to prepare a new constitution for the country, said Emad Abdel Ghafour, president of the Salafi Nour Party.
“It would be based on previous constitutions and experiences so as to arrive at the best formula,” Abdel Ghafour said, adding that the draft would be presented to the public for discussion.
Party spokesman Yousry Hammad explained that the proposed constitution disposes of the presidential system. “We don’t want power to be in the hands of one person,” he said.
Hammad added that article two of the proposed constitution stipulates that the “provisions” and not the “principles” of Islamic Sharia law are the main sources of legislation. “We shall apply Sharia gradually so as not to cause distortions,” he said.
Applying it all at once might provoke resistance. But the journey of a thousand years’ regression of human rights begins with a single step.
But the party has denounced the “Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice Authority” that some of its members have already formed, taking after the Saudi model. “This was an individual endeavor that the party is not responsible for,” said Abdel Ghafour.
The authority”s founders said, in their first statement on Facebook, that they are not working under the umbrella of the Nour Party.
Typical lack of transparency, with an odd twist:
“We assure you that we would not resort to force or violence, but rather to dialogue and advice in applying Sharia,” the statement said, adding that the founders would reveal their identities once they accumulated a sufficient number of members in their Facebook group.