A controversial edict issued by Egypt's president - which spurred vigorous, sometimes violent protests by those calling it a dictatorial power grab - "will fall immediately" if voters approve a new constitution later this month, the country's prime minister said.
Echoing President Mohamed Morsy and other government officials, Prime Minister Hesham Kandil said the November 21 decree that made Morsy's past and future decisions immune to judicial oversight was issued "to protect the process of building the democratic institutions."
Regardless, Kandil told CNN's Christiane Amanpour that it should be a moot point after December 15, when Egyptians will approve or reject a new constitution in a nationwide referendum.
"We're talking about one hour (and) 12 days until this declaration drops," the prime minister said late Monday night. "So I don't think people should worry about the declaration. We should now worry about what is coming, which is the constitution."
The draft document that voters will consider is itself a source of significant controversy.
Egypt effectively has been without a constitution since the early 2011 popular uprising that led to longtime President Hosni Mubarak's ouster.
Morsy won a tight presidential election and took office in June, soon assuming not only executive powers but legislative ones with the dissolution of the elected parliament. Meanwhile, his government often was at odds with members of the judiciary, many of which are holdovers from the Mubarak era.
In addition to declaring his decisions immune from judicial oversight, the president gave the then-100-member group charged with crafting Egypt's constitution extra time to do so.
But given the charged protests against him, Morsy expedited the process over objections from the secular opposition, some of whom walked out of the constitutional assembly in protest.
That group ended up being dominated by Islamists, including members of the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party that Morsy once led. Kandil insisted Monday opposition views - including that there would be protections for women and to prevent Egypt from becoming a theocracy - were taken into consideration when the final draft was pushed through Friday.
"It is impossible to have a perfect text that everybody agreed to," the prime minister said. "... I think there is a majority consensus to move forward with the referendum. In two weeks, we'll find out what Egyptians think of this constitution."
Most of Egypt's judiciary already has made its opinions known on Morsy's recent actions.
All but seven of Egypt's 34 courts and 90% of its prosecutors went on strike last week due to what Judge Mohamed al Zind of the Egyptian Judges Club, a professional organization, called a "vicious ... attack on the judicial authority's independence."
About 1,000 judges from around the country agreed Sunday that they would not supervise a national referendum on the constitution, members of the same club said. The club's unanimous decision means court officials who would normally sort out any irregularities in voting will abstain from the process in protest.
But on Monday, members of the Egypt's Supreme Judicial Council - the nation's highest judicial body - met and agreed to supervise the December 15 referendum, Judge Abdel Rahman Behloul said. This group's members had initially criticized Morsy's edict, but they softened their stance after a meeting with him last week.
"We have been conducting a survey and, despite the position of the Judges Club to boycott the review of the referendum, we have received feedback from many prominent judges who are willing to oversee the vote," Behloul said. An estimated 11,000 judges will be needed to oversee the vote.
Al Zind, from the judges club, said 90% of judges are refusing to participate "but there are also Muslim Brotherhood judges" and others supportive of Morsy's stance. He claimed the Supreme Judicial Council "has no real power, they are heads of courts that deal with administrative matters."