As Celebrations Continue, Morsi Begins Forming Government

Jun 25, 2012

Mohammed Morsi, the Muslim Brotherhood candidate who became Egypt's president-elect yesterday, began consultations and moved into the office once held by the deposed Hosni Mubarak.

This was a historic weekend for Egypt: Many feared that the ruling military council would give the elections to Ahmed Shafiq, Mubarak's last prime minister. But that didn't happen and when Morsi was handed the victory, hundreds of thousands of Egyptians poured into the streets.

From Cairo, NPR's Grant Clark filed this report for our Newscast unit:

"There are still scenes of jubilation in Cairo's Tahrir Square after hundreds of thousands of Egyptians celebrated Morsi's win through the night. Morsi claimed almost 52 percent of the vote, compared with former general Shafiq's 47 percent.

"In his victory speech, Morsi said he intended to build a new inclusive Egypt and appealed for unity. As promised, he has resigned from the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party and will begin working on forming a new administration. Mursi is expected to be inaugurated on June 30th...but with the military still holding significant control, just how much actual power he'll have remains a question."

As the AP writes this morning, Morsi's job is a tough one. The military has handed itself great power and Morsi is an Islamist, who is "feared among youth groups behind the uprising, which campaigned for a secular democratic state."

But in his first speech as president Morsi said he would be a "president for all Egyptians." The BBC reports that the divided country breathed a bit easier after rumblings that Morsi had discussions with Nobel peace-prize laureate Mohamed ElBaradei.

Egypt's Al Ahram reports that this morning Morsi was all business. He meet with Egypt's industrialists and he presented a "renaissance project," that envisioned political reforms and an ambitious economic vision.

"We want Egypt to be a stable country and for people to trust its president and government by making the people feel partner in the country having rights and duties," Morsi said according to Ahram. "The era of the president as institution is over."

To that end, the AP reports that the Egyptian stock market soared. At one point, reports AP, the EGX 100 index "rose more than 5 percent, triggering a 'circuit breaker' designed to prevent drastic market fluctuation."

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.