Egypt's opposition coalition the National Salvation Front said tonight (Dec 9, 2012) they would boycott a referendum on a new constitution, scheduled for Saturday (Dec 15, 2012). Their rejection for the new constitution comes amid protests against the country's newly elected president Mohammed Morsi, who is accused of grabbing too much power for himself as well as curtailing freedoms.
This comes after two weeks of street battles between protestors and Muslim Brotherhood militias and supporters, who support Morsi.
Although Morsi had scrapped the presidential decree he issued which gave him absolute powers and fermented the most recent unrest, his insistence on a referendum on a controversial constitution is being met with fresh calls for protests.
Zeinobia blogs at Egyptian Chronicles:
I was going to vote No in the Constitution referendum , I refuse this disfigured draft constitution but after what happened on Wednesday from violence , torture and constant lying now I got a trust issue.
Regardless of what the MB claims now , how can I trust them as ruling party in the referendum !? How can I trust people like them when it comes to referendum's results !?
Another thing it is good that the new Constitution declaration stated that in case the people rejected the Constitution draft , we will have to elect a new Constituent assembly directly. Yet unfortunately it did not say how we are going to elect that assembly , on what bases and on what mechanism. I am speaking about a referendum that will take place after 6 days allegedly , there should be more clear steps.
The Constitution referendum should be delayed and a real national dialogue should be held. Egyptians killed Egyptians last Wednesday for God sake !!
On Twitter, many, however, see that boycotting the referendum is not the answer to Egypt's political stand off.
Amira Howeidy tweets:
@amirahoweidy: Egypt 2011: Brotherhood: mobilize and win. The rest: boycott and lose. Egypt 2012: ibid. #yawn
Dalia Ezzat notes:
@DaliaEzzat_: Lessons never learned by the opposition : boycotting everything doesn't work. You end up losing. #Fact #Egypt
Ahmed Ezzat advices [ar]:
الناس اللي هتقاطع الاستفتاء والناس اللي هتصوت بلا …لو توحدتم حول موقف واحد سيكون أفضل بكثير، وامكانيات الانتصار ستكون أعلى.
@ahmed3zat: To the people who will boycott and those who will vote No: if you joined forces and unified under one stance, it will be better and the possibility of success will be higher
And Noha Abd El Raouf offers more advice:
@NouRaouf: Let's not Boycott the referendum if this was our last option, Let's have awareness campaigns to explain why we shud vote No #Egypt