National powers call for new gov’t, say sit-in will continue until demands are met

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By Tamim Elyan

CAIRO: Over 25 political parties, organizations, youth movements and five presidential candidates demanded in a statement Thursday the formation of a new government with a new leadership and “balancing” its authorities with the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) to perform its tasks.

The national powers, who held a meeting Wednesday called for by the Revolution Youth Coalition, said that the Tahrir sit-in will continue until all demands are met with empirical decisions and held the SCAF and the government responsible for its security.

“Prime Minister Essam Sharaf is an honorable and honest man but we need a government of a different type; we need a rescue government formed of politicians and technocrats who are chosen by national powers rather than an interim government that is forced on us,” said Nasser Abdel Hamid, member of the Revolution Youth Coalition.

They called on the new government to respond to the demands agreed upon by national powers which includes the cleansing of state institutions from ousted regime figures, especially the Ministry of Interior, the judiciary and the media, speeding the trials of those accused of killing protesters during the revolution and corrupt regime figures. They also called for “immediately” applying procedures to achieve social justice like setting a minimum and maximum wage and reviewing the budget.

The demands, upon which ending the sit-in depends, also included the immediate halt of military trials for civilians and the retrial of those who were prosecuted in front of a military court.

“We stress on the peaceful nature of the protests without harming public facilities or hindering work there and if it ever happened it is because of the slow response from the SCAF and the government in achieving the demands,” read the statement.

The powers included the National Council, the National Association for Change, Democratic Front, Al-Wafd, Al-Tagammu, Al-Ghad, Masr Al-Horreya, Popular Coalition, Nasserist and Egyptian Socialist parties.

However, neither the Muslim Brotherhood nor its Freedom and Justice Party attended the meeting.

“Some demands were referred to in the SCAF statement but we will wait until they are implemented and won’t be satisfied with promises only,” Abdel Hamid said.

“We want to reach a safe stage for the transitional period that guarantees that the instability comes to an end,” he added.

Presidential candidates Mohamed ElBaradei, Amr Moussa, Hamdeen Sabahi, Ayman Nour and Hisham Al-Bastaweesy agreed on the statement.

Moussa disagreed on the demand for a new leadership of the government and asked that the government with its new formation would be given a chance to implement the demands.

A number of public figures also signed the statements including actor Khaled Al-Nabawy and director Khaled Youssef.

They denied calling planned protests for Friday “Last Warning Friday.”

In the latest edition of the statement, national powers participating at the meeting deleted a sentence describing the SCAF as “the protector and the guarantor” of the revolution.



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