The long and winding road to Egyptian democracy


Omar Salem is a proud Egyptian citizen

Today should be a day of joy for all Egyptians. People power has changed the face of Egypt, the Middle East and the world for ever.

Egyptians-celebrate-11-02-11
Hopes are high for the advent of a democratic Egypt – yet the road from military rule to democracy is bound to be a long one, fraught with dangers.

The list of steps on that road is long:

• First of all, the emergency laws that limit freedom of association and speech must be lifted;

• Secondly, the constitution should be changed to make it easier for political parties to organise and for individuals to run for President;

• Thirdly, time needs to be given before elections for the relatively weak and disorganised opposition political parties to organise properly for elections;

• Fourthly, political prisoners need to be released and allowed to participate in political activity unhindered;

• Finally, the organisational infrastructure needs to be put in place for the holding of free and fair elections.

The dignity, peacefulness and vibrancy of the revolution provides hope that Egypt will meet these new challenges.

We have seen over the last 18 days that democracy and freedom are universal values. The people of Egypt want democracy, let’s hope we now get it.

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