Another violation to the rights of expression and having access to information

June 9th, 2011 by Editor

The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights (EOHR) expresses its worry for receiving information about a lawsuit filed against the media Specialist Mona Al Husaini and Mohammed Saad Khattab, a Journalist for Sout Al Omma Newspaper. Samir Zaki accused them for insulting him in a televised program, Ala Al Makshof, on May 3, 2011. The lawsuit will be discussed in Bulak Misdemeanor Circle, North Cairo Court’s session on June 18, 2011.  According to the complaint no. 1160, submitted to the prosecutor general office on May 17, 2011, the program discussed allocating the state’s lands by the ex-Minister of Housing, Mohamed Ibrahim Solimna, Youssef Wally, deputy of the Prime minister and Samir Zaki, the head of the 6th of October Company for Land Reclamation. The ex-officials allocated the governmental lands for other people for very cheap prices in order to other benefits, so they violated the articles no. 39, 40, 43, 113, 213, 214 and 216 of the Egyptian criminal Law.  

In this regard, EOHR emphasizes that the criticizing the governmental officials’ behaviors is allowed and also all people are allowed to know all the information related to dealing with the public capital, according to the Egyptian constitution and the international standards for human rights. The right of expression is one of the main pillars of democracy, especially after the Egyptian revolution.

Hafez Abu Seada, the head of EOHR, confirmed that media is one of the important performance monitoring tools in the democratic countries. So, the media specialists should be given the freedom of expression in order to contribute in defending ignored and marginalized people, unveiling corruption members and taking the perpetrators to accountability.

Abu Seads stressed on the need to review the laws related to the media specialist right of expression. The Egyptian criminal law still contains articles against the journalist’s freedom of expression and others restrict the access to information. The head of EOHR calls for the reform of the Egyptian legal structures that restrict the freedom of expression.      

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