Top ten mistakes that led to Mursi’s ouster

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Speculations of what could have led Egyptians to call for the ouster of Mohammad Mursi are many. Below are 10 reasons believed to be why the Islamist president failed to remain in power for his term.

1- The Brotherhoodization of the state

Within months, Mursi appointed Brotherhood members in various state institutions. He assigned five members in different ministries, eight in the presidential office, in addition to seven governors, 12 governorate assistants,13 governorate councilors and 12 city mayors, all in charge of 40 million Egyptians.

2- Judges and Judiciary

Mursi’s attempts to control the judiciary went against building a democratic state.

  • He dismissed public prosecutor Abdel Meguid Mahmoud last November, a step that was later ruled out by an Egyptian court as unconstitutional.
  • The president’s power grab last November was also considered a step that weakens the courts, as it excludes his decrees from judicial oversight.

3- Ousting Mubarak’s military strongman

  • The dismissal of Field General Mohammed Tantawy, the defense minister under former president Hosni Mubarak, the country’s powerful armed forces looked at Mursi with mistrust. Tantawy, along with other top commanders from the country’s Supreme Council of Armed Forces where the ones who forced Mubarak to leave power.
  • Consecutive attempts to insult the military by the Muslim Brotherhood, which the president hails from, have made the relation between Mursi and the establishment at unease.

4- Crackdown on media

  • The dismissal of editors heading some of the country’s newspapers, in addition to confiscating a number of newspapers, raised woes regarding the future of media freedom in Egypt under Mursi’s rule.
  • More than 200 journalists were questioned by the country’s public prosecutor.
  • The presidential office filed 100 suits against journalists and media figures, including the country’s popular satirist Bassem Youssef.
  • In a response, the government rebuffed critics, arguing that the move was aimed at suppressing media reports that incite violence or the ones that personally insult the newly-elected president.

5- Economic failures

  • -Failing to fulfill promises he had made during Egypt’s presidential elections fueled people against him. Failing to increase wages and improve living conditions.
  • There were about 558 demonstrations, 514 strikes and 500 sit-ins this year in Egypt.
  • The ousted president tried to resolve the country’s deteriorating economic crisis by his decision to amend tax laws last November. However, this resulted in increasing prices of essential commodities needed by citizens.

6- Foreign affairs

The timing of Mursi’s visit to Tehran and Moscow affected how his position from the Syrian crisis was viewed, especially that he came to power following a popular revolution that later inspired the Syrian uprising.

7- Real decision makers

Leaders at the Muslim Brotherhood continuously announced decisions and made statements regarding state affairs during public events. This gave people the impression that they were the real policy-makers behind Mursi’s decisions. This has weakened the president’s image in front of the public.

8- Emergency declarations

Mursi’s declaration of a state of emergency in three cities near Egypt's Suez Canal, following four days of civil unrest, was deemed as ineffective. The cities were subjected to a 30-day curfew, which according to the constitution, needs to be approved by the parliament or council members. The deceleration was challenged seriously by residents of the cities, who filled the streets despite the curfew.

9- Pardoning prisoners

Mursi’s decision to issue a decree to pardon 22 imprisoned defendants serving sentences in Wadi Natrun prison. Some of the pardoned prisoners faced charges of drug-selling and murder.

10-Accusing opposition

Filing complaints against opposition figures like former nuclear chief Mohammad ElBaradei, opposition leaders Hamdeen Sabahi and Amr Moussa, and a number of media personals accusing them of inciting people against the newly-elected president.

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