Despite yesterday's tumultuous events, millions of Egyptians will nevertheless head to the polls this weekend to pick their first post-revolution president. Egypt's constitutional court has invalidated the recent parliamentary election but has allowed Hosni Mubarak's former PM, Ahmed Shafiq, to continue to stand for president . As the only other remaining candidate, I alone represent an unequivocal departure from the old regime that was toppled by the revolution of 2011.
I was nominated and elected by constituents – parties, groups, and individuals – who marched the streets of Egypt calling for change. I was jailed by the old regime. I belong to the middle classes that were sold out by the old establishment. I hold political and social views that are shared by many in our society but were suppressed or criminalised by the old regime. I understand the ambitions, values and standards held by many mainstream Egyptians.
For the sake of the Egyptian people and for the world, we must find the shortest and safest route to a stable, safe and sustainable transition in Egypt. To this end we need a detailed programme for change and renaissance, outlining clear priorities and specific plans. This I can offer.
On the political front, Egyptians revolted against an oppressive regime with the clear aim of regaining their freedom and affirming their liberties. Nothing short of a complete overhaul of the political system will be acceptable. It is not enough to remove a ruler or restructure a police force. We must spread and reinforce freedom, forming new political parties and a free mass media.
At the grassroots, people must be free of government interference, and allowed to choose public officials through fair elections. No party or group or class must ever be allowed to monopolise the political power in the country. As part of this agenda, I will transform the position of the president to an institution, with clear and delineated roles given to a number of vice-presidents (representing political and social forces other than the Freedom and Justice party that nominated me, and including a woman for the first time in modern Egyptian history), as well as a number of presidential aides and a team of advisers, all working in a transparent political environment and subject to oversight by parliament and civil society.
Inclusion is also at the core of my economic vision. For decades, economic opportunities, along with social status and political powers, were reserved for the very few (in their book, Why Nations Fail, Daron Acemoglu and James Robinson state that most of the privatisation programme in Egypt benefited only 30 families). With 40% of the Egyptian population spending less than $2 a day, how could the economy ever grow sufficiently to fulfil the legitimate ambitions of Egyptians? Balanced economic growth and social justice will be the ultimate objective of my programme, as it was for our great revolution as a whole.
Supporting this economic vision is a comprehensive social and human development programme aimed at investing in Egypt's most valuable asset: its people, and the large, disciplined workforce that Egyptians have proven to be, in spite of monumental challenges.
In a highly integrated knowledge-based on global economy, we must encourage both the public and private sectors in Egypt to learn from, work and trade with the rest of the world. Members of my campaign have already been sending and receiving delegations to many countries to explore opportunities for such cooperation .
I firmly believe that the reform and development objectives of the revolution can be achieved if we work closely and very effectively with friendly regional and global forces.
Egypt must emerge again, liberated from dictatorship and the rule of the exploitative minority, to occupy its rightful place on the world stage. The absence of Egypt in the past few decades has left a dangerous vacuum in the Arab world, and has damaged the stability of the region and the prosperity of its peoples. Egypt's destiny is to lead. If I am elected on Sunday, I will make sure that Egypt fulfils its destiny.
Dr Mohamed Morsi is the Freedom and Justice party candidate in the Egyptian presidential election.