The draft constitution, which will be put to a mid-January
referendum, is an important milestone in the political transition
plan mapped out by the army after it deposed elected Islamist
President Mohamed Mursi in July.
The banner was unfurled at a high-profile news conference on Sunday
to promote the constitution. The Arabic text misspelt the word
"Egyptians" as "determined" and Google image searches identified
three of five people in the banner as foreigners.
In English, the banner read "All Egyptians Constitution".
In a statement received on Tuesday, the State Information Service
(SIS) apologized for the misspelling but did not mention the
controversy over the nationalities of the people portrayed in the
"The SIS formally apologizes for the error found in the banner...
(It) was delivered hours before the conference began as a donation
by a non-governmental organization promoting the constitutional
draft," the SIS said.
An anchor at a morning program on Mega FM, a privately-owned
Egyptian radio station, criticized the banner on Tuesday for not
accurately representing the Egyptian people.
"It would have been nice if the ad that was representing Egyptians
and targets Egyptians actually had Egyptians in it and not a
Canadian handicapped person, an American doctor and an Irishwoman,"
Khaled Alish said on his radio program, referring to the three
people in the banner identified as foreigners.
[to top of second column]
"Also 80 percent of Egyptian women wear a headscarf and most men
have beards and moustaches, so it would have been nice to have
people who look like that to make sense," Alish said. "It was a
mistake and it needs to be investigated."
SIS said it had determined the error was unintentional.
(Reporting by Asma Alsharif and Yasmine Saleh;
editing by Tom Perry
and Alistair Lyon)
[© 2013 Thomson Reuters. All rights
Copyright 2013 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.