Millennium Post

Morsi swears to preserve republican order

Mohammed Morsi was sworn in on Saturday as Egypt's first freely elected President bringing his Muslim Brotherhood to power after 84 years of struggle, even as the military seemed determined to retain control.

Morsi, who was the winner of the presidential run-off, was officially sworn in before Egypt's High Constitutional Court as Egypt's first civilian president.

'I swear by the Almighty God to sincerely preserve the republican order and to respect the constitution and law, and completely care for the people's interest,' 60-year-old Morsi said at the ceremony in the Constitutional Court. 'We aspire to a better on Sunday, a new Egypt and a second republic,' Morsi said.

He became Arab world's first freely elected Islamist president and Egypt's fifth head of state since the overthrow of the monarchy some 60 years ago. He took his oath before the general assembly of the High Constitutional Court, composed of 18 top judges, lead by Farouk Sultan.

The ceremony was broadcast live by state television, after an apparent change of plans: state television had earlier announced the ceremony would be recorded and aired at a later time. The national anthem played to mark the beginning of the ceremony, with Morsi sitting between Sultan and his deputy judge, Maher El-Beheiry.

Farouk Sultan congratulated Morsi on behalf of the judges' general assembly in an opening speech ahead of the oath-swearing.

'May God assist you with the challenging task you are taking on,' said Sultan, adding that 'based on article 30 of the Constitutional Declaration announced on 17 June 2012 I call you to swear the oath.'

Following Sultan's speech, Morsi recited the oath.

Morsi symbolically swore himself in on Friday before tens of thousands of supporters in the iconic Tahrir Square and vowed to fight for authority, defying country's ruling generals.

After the swearing in ceremony on Saturday, Morsi headed to Cairo University to give his first presidential address.

Morsi, in a suit and burgundy tie, promised to lead a 'civil, constitutional and modern state' in a short speech after taking the oath.

Morsi, was forced to take his oath at the court instead of in parliament after the military disbanded the Islamist-led house following a court order earlier this month.

Morsi arrived in a small motorcade as several hundred supporters gathered outside the court to cheer the new president.

His rise to presidency marks a dramatic reversal of fortunes for the Brotherhood that was banned under ousted leader Hosni Mubarak.

Morsi, in his first public speech on Friday had promised to be a 'president for all Egyptians', adding: 'You are the source of all authority and legitimacy.' He insisted that 'no institution will be above the people,' critiquing an army which has sought to shield itself from parliamentary oversight. 'I promise you that I will not give up on any of the powers given to the president,' Morsi said, in a veiled reference to the Supreme Council of Armed Forces' recent decrees.
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