CAIRO — The Muslim Brotherhood early Monday projected its candidate, an Islamist, as the winner of Egypt’s first competitive presidential election, hours after the ruling military council issued an interim constitution granting itself broad power over the future government, all but eliminating the president’s authority in an apparent effort to guard against just such a victory.
The military’s new charter is the latest in a series of swift steps that the generals have taken to tighten their grasp on power just at the moment when they had promised to hand over to elected civilians the authority that they assumed on the ouster of Hosni Mubarak last year. Their charter gives them control of all laws and the national budget, immunity from any oversight, and the power to veto a declaration of war.
After dissolving the Brotherhood-led Parliament elected four months ago, and locking out its lawmakers, the generals on Sunday night also seized control of the process of writing a permanent constitution. State news media reported that the generals had picked a 100-member panel to draft it.