Egypt's President Mohammed Morsi on Wednesday defended the transparency of the recent constitutional referendum, which was marked by low turnout and complaints of fraud, and he reiterated his call to the opposition to participate in a national dialogue.
In a speech with the aim of securing the enactment of the new charter, Morsi, a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, emphasized that the plebiscite was conducted with complete judicial supervision and that Egypt is now beginning "a phase of stability and development."
"We have experienced days and weeks of worry and waiting, during which I have tried to get the homeland to a good port and do away with the transitory phase of almost two years, during which the economy has suffered and there have been political disputes," Morsi said.
To try to close the gap between the different political forces, Morsi once again urged a national dialogue, which for the moment the non-Islamist groups have been boycotting because of their rejection of the constitution and the most recent decisions of the president.
"The controversy over the constitution is normal in a country that is moving toward democracy and these differences of opinion are a healthy phenomenon," he added.
The Egyptian Election Commission announced on Tuesday the definitive results of the plebiscite on the new constitution in which the "yes" vote, supported by the Islamists, won with 63.8 percent of the ballots.
However, only 32.9 percent of Egypt's 52 million eligible voters went to the polls.
The charter was rejected by the National Salvation Front, which represents the greater portion of the non-Islamist opposition, saying that the drafting of the document was monopolized by the Muslim Brotherhood and the Salafists. EFE