Shura council approves redistricting bill

The Shura Council has given its final approval to a draft law amending electoral districts.

The bill establishes four new constituencies in the newly-installed governorates of Helwan, 6 October, and Luxor, for a total of 88 electoral districts.

Shura Council Speaker Safwat el-Sherif said the amendment will be carried out as part of administrative modifications that have followed the establishment of the new governorates.

Nagy el-Shahaby, chairman of the Geel Party, said that changing the number of electoral constituencies is an established right for the Supreme Presidential Elections Commission, not the Ministry of Interior.

El-Shahaby argued that devoting one electoral division for Helwan will only ensure victory for the candidate from the ruling National Democratic Party.

El-Sherif, however, stressed that the state is not backing certain nominees. Mufid Shehab, state minister for legal and parliamentary affairs, said that amending constituencies is a genuine right of the state, and the Interior Ministry is responsible for this job.

MP Shawqi el-Sayyed said that the elections commission has the authority to suggest rules for dividing electoral districts, and regulate the process of elections.

A representative from the Tagammu Party called for reconsidering the bill, arguing that the law is unfair to citizens of Helwan because it devotes only one constituency for their governorate.

Shehab replied that some electoral districts contain more citizens than all of Helwan Governorate.

Translated from the Arabic Edition.

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