Experts: Brotherhood will not get more than 25% of parliamentary seats

A number of experts in Islamic affairs expect that the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party will not attain more than 25 percent of the seats in the upcoming parliament, since the recent passage of a new elections law banning members of political parties from running in single-winner electoral districts. The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) has sought to curtail the Brotherhood's power to preserve the civil nature of the state, the experts have added.

A careful reading of the political map in Egypt confirms the Brotherhood will win at most between 15 and 20 percent of the parliament's seats, said Mohamed Habib, senior leader of the Nahda (Renaissance) Party and former deputy supreme guide of the Brotherhood.

The notion that the Brotherhood will win a sweeping majority in the parliament is not true, he added.

All political movements will compete heavily to win seats in individual candidate districts, Habib continued, including the Brotherhood and remnants from the now-dismantled National Democratic Party (NDP). He added that former NDP members will definitely win a majority of individual seats, as well as a small portion of seats in list-based electoral districts for its members who join political parties.

Ammar Ali Hassan, an expert in Islamic affairs, said the Brotherhood saw a golden opportunity after the revolution, believing it could attain power by dominating a parliament headed by a Brotherhood leader. This explains why it established a political party, joined the Democratic Coalition and allied with Salafis. But the group did not realize that the SCAF noticed the Brotherhood's aggressive new political stance since Mubarak's resignation.

Egypt's military rulers view the civil nature of the state as a matter of national security, so they have put in place laws regulating elections in a way that obstructs the progress of the Freedom and Justice Party, Hassan continued. They have opened the door for newer political forces to compete with the Brotherhood in the upcoming parliamentary elections, he added.

Amr Hisham, an expert at Al-Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies, also expects that the Brotherhood will not acquire more than 25 percent of the upcoming parliament's seats and will contest single-winner seats by nominating members not from the Freedom and Justice Party.

Translated from the Arabic Edition

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