Kalb-Baladi

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

"Transparency and Democracy" in Egypt

A leading member of Egypt's ruling party has hinted it could nominate Gamal Mubarak for president despite his repeated statements that he does not want the post held by his father since 1981. President Hosni Mubarak has dismissed the idea of an "inheritance" of power by Gamal, but the comments by Hossam Badrawi were a sign that an initiative to push him towards the post may come from allies in the party. "It is our right as a party to nominate whoever has the qualifications for leadership and it is his right to accept or decline," Badrawi told the ruling party's newspaper. "This is not inheritance (of power) because, at the end of the day, it must take place in a framework of transparency and democracy," he said, in reference to a scenario in which Gamal would be the party's candidate for president. Analysts, opposition politicians and diplomats believe Gamal, 42, has been positioned to replace his 78-year-old father. His rising public profile this year has fuelled the speculation and there are no obvious alternatives.

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