Former NDP leader: Mubarak suggested Republican Guards could open fire on protesters

The former secretary general of the dissolved National Democratic Party, Hossam Badrawy, has revealed some details of his meetings with Hosni Mubarak before the latter resigned from the presidency.

In an interview with Al-Masry Al-Youm Chief Editor Magdi al-Gallad on Dream TV, Badrawy said Mubarak told him that “Republican Guards forces will shoot protesters” if they gathered in front of the presidential palace.

Badrawy added that he played a role in persuading Mubarak to step down, and that at that time he was in communication with all political players and outlined his political view to Mubarak.

Badrawy said he had spoken to Omar Suleiman, then intelligence chief, and Suleiman asked him to express his vision directly to the president.

Badrawy said he was prevented from entering the palace after telling Mubarak it was necessary for him to step down. He said he saw several figures from the former regime but was not sure who exactly denied him access.

He said he believed Mubarak’s resignation would ease tension, as the revolutionaries deserved to see their ambitions fulfilled and the nation needed a legitimate transformation in accordance with the Constitution.

Asked if Mubarak was convinced he had to leave power, Badrawy answered that Mubarak was understanding but his advisers were giving him false reports about the situation in Egypt. He said that he told Mubarak: “The advisers who dragged you into this cannot get you out of it. You have to listen to the voice of reason away from this circle of advisers.”

“The president received incorrect information about the numbers of protesters,” Badrawy went on. “I made it clearer that this was not a revolution carried out by hungry people or thugs.” He said he told Mubarak it was a group of young people trying to express their views in a better way than former generations, and that the uprising demanded freedom and dignity.

Asked why Mubarak’s decision to bow out came late, Badrawy said there are details that he cannot currently reveal. However, he said certain figures were clearly opposed to the decision. He said he could not give an accurate list of names, but that it may include Gamal Mubarak, former Chief of Presidential Staff Zakariya Azmy, former Shura Council Speaker Safwat al-Sherif and former Minister of Information Anas al-Fiqqi.

He added that on Mubarak's request he phoned former Parliamentary Speaker Fathi Sorour to tell him he needed to introduce amendments to the Constitution, but Sorour seemed tense and asked him to call the head of the Court of Cassation.

Sorour then called the presidential palace and this was when Badrawy was asked to leave.

Badrawy said he thought he could either go to the media to say what happened, or carry on with his efforts for the revolution to achieve its goals, which is the path he chose to take.

A prominent member of the NDP, Badrawy was appointed its secretary general on 5 February in what seemed to be an attempt to cast the party in a better light. However, Badrawy resigned from the party soon after his appointment.

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