Protesters have been demanding the dissolution of local councils, considered a vestige of Mubarak regime [EPA]

Egypt's local councils elected under the country's ousted President Hosni Mubarak are to be dissolved, a court in Cairo has ruled.

Tuesday's ruling followed calls by protesters for remnants of the old political order to be dismantled.

"The court issued a decision to dissolve local councils across the country," judge Kamal al-Lamaei said.

But the ruling is not final and the government can appeal the verdict before a higher court within 60 days.

The councils, like other elected bodies in Egypt, were filled with members of Mubarak's ruling party or his supporters who secured office during elections that were widely rigged when the former president ruled, analysts say.

Mubarak was forced out of power in February after an uprising by protesters who denounced his decades-long rule.

The military rulers who took power dissolved parliament in February and have since moved to bring to justice Mubarak-era officials accused of abuse of office and graft.

Mubarak himself, his powerful sons and his wife Suzanne have been detained and questioned over abuse of office.

The local councils case started a few months ago when a group of citizens asked the government to dissolve them, saying they were bedevilled by corruption.

The government did not respond so they took their demand to an administrative court.

New political groups are forming ahead of legislative elections set for September while the army generals have pledged a presidential vote before year-end.

Source: Agencies