Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi has issued Decree No 62 of 2021 renewing the appointment of Shawki Allam as Egypt’s Grand Mufti and head of Dar Al-Ifta, until his retirement date on 12 August 2021.
Al-Sisi’s decision was published on Wednesday in the Official Gazette. Since Allam’s mandate ends before he reaches the retirement age, Al-Azhar’s Council for Senior Scholars asked Al-Sisi to extend his second mandate to August.
Allam was elected by the Council in February 2013, replacing outgoing grand Mufti Ali Gomaa.
The position of Grand Mufti is one of the most influential positions in Egypt and Islamic world.
Heading Dar Al-Ifta, the Grand Mufti has Egyptian Islamic advisory and judicial powers that offer Muslims religious guidance and advice through the issuing of fatwas on every day and contemporary issues.
As he issues fatwas (religious edicts) on different matters, the Grand Mufti is the government’s first and primary source of religious authority.
The person nominated for the position must be under the age of 60 years old. In order to select a new Mufti, the Council for Senior Scholars nominates three of its member scholars who meet the criteria of eligibility for the position.
By a direct secret ballot the council chooses the candidate to hold the position. This nomination should be submitted to the Egyptian President to fulfil his jurisdiction in issuing a decision appointing the new Mufti of the Republic.