Mohamed Hussein Tantawi, head of Egypt's Supreme Council of Armed Forces (SCAF), said Sunday the army’s role would not change in the new constitution.
Two articles in draft constitution presented by the deputy prime minister early this month stirred controversy and led to mass protests in the past week. “The position of the armed forces will remain as it is. It will not change in any new constitution,” Tantawi stated on Sunday.
Recent reports suggested that SCAF was considering delaying the elections following heavy Tahrir clashes that left more than 40 people dead. However, Tantawi insisted that SCAF and the Interior Ministry are capable of securing the vote. “I call on the Egyptian people to go and vote at the polling stations without any worries. The elections will begin tomorrow as planned,” he added. “The armed forces will cooperate with the Interior Ministry to secure the whole process.”
Tantawi also dismissed calls to fire Kamal El-Ganzouri, the newly appointed prime minister. “Tasking El-Ganzouri with forming a salvation government for a short span is aimed at passing the current difficult period,” Tantawi conveyed.