The Egyptian Organization launches its campaign “Know Your Constitution”; the new draft constitution opens the door for progress in the state of rights and freedoms in Egypt.
December 31st, 2013 by Editor
The political forces, parties, and community members have agreed upon the new draft constitution, which keep pace with the nature of the political and economic status in the current phase, meet the demands of these strong powers, and at the same time it has achieved balance and cooperation between the three authorities, and ensured the independence of the judiciary.
The political forces also stressed on the importance of the participation in the upcoming referendum, which is considered as a national duty to grab the country out of this critical phase, all of that came in the launch of the campaign “know your constitution ”, which was initiated by the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights yesterday Monday 30th December 2013.
From his side, Hafez Abu Seada, President of EOHR, has emphasized that the new draft constitution includes a chapter for the rights and freedoms in accordance with the international standards, it is one of the best constitutions in Egypt so far, as it has achieved the hopes and the aspirations of all the categories, gave a special caring for the ethnic and the marginalized groups, noting for the first time to the support of women, youth, Christians, our people in Sinai, Nubians, and in total it is a civilian constitution based on the establishment of the rule of law and the state of Human Rights.
He further added that the draft constitution expresses all the political forces, the balance of power in the Egyptian street, and opens the door for the democratic development, which enables the progress in the future.
The campaign aims at educating the citizens about the articles of the constitution in all the provinces, through the leading role of EOHR in enhancing the participation, support to the implementation of the future map, and the confronting of terrorism.
Dr. Wahid Abd El-Meguid; The Writer and Political Thinker, pointed that we need several initiatives matching this trend to educate the citizens about the importance of the referendum process in all the provinces, that the societal dialogue on the constitution will enrich the process of participation to a large extent, and the constitution acquires its value by its articles and by the variety of its prospects. The constitution has been considered as an elite matter since 1923 up till now and what we need to do is to break the barrier and make the participation open for all the Egyptians.
Dr. Salah Hassab Allah; Leading member in the conference party, clarified that the political system according to the draft constitution is very good in spite of the fear felt by the Egyptians based on the previous political experience, that we didn’t have a political system in a real sense. In case of a crisis happened because of the president we shall find a strong parliament to solve this crisis, therefore the mixed political system is suitable to a certain extent in this current period with the hope of transferring into Parliamentary system in the future, therefore we must deal with the citizen on the basis that the idea of constitution is a contract between the citizen and the state to clarify the duties and rights.
He further added that we must go out of the closed rooms and deal with the citizens directly especially after stating that the state of rule is based on the separation of powers between the three authorities, and the work on building strong state aims at building a real democracy. And although it is not the optimal draft, we expect it to be agreed upon.
Dr. souhir Lotfy; Sociology Professor and Former Secretary General of the National Council for Women, stated that the constitution consists of materials that commit the state to give attention to the women especially in the field of health insurance, education, political participation, combat violence against women, and a commitment to child welfare and maternity.
She has further added that the draft offense the human trafficking and the women were in the past the first victim to this crime, also the draft talked about concrete procedures, which can lead to stability.
Dr. Mokhtar Ghobashi; Political Science Professor and Vice-President of the Arab Center for Political and Strategic Studies, stated that the constitution is a human diligence we may disagree or agree on some of its articles, and the constitutional text is good in some articles such as Article 27 about the minimum and maximum wage, which needs many years to be implemented on the ground. Therefore the Voting with yes will be the starting point for building the political sector followed by the economic sector, which has reached the sag stage.
He further pointed to the Article 44 which is about the importance of the Nile River, and its preservation, that this issue has been raised recently with a lot of controversy in dealing with it, and the Renaissance Dam issue was dealt in an underestimated way to our strength as a nation because it will impact on a way or another the Egyptian state share in the water, and also because of its negative effects on the agriculture sector and the economic fundamentals.
Dr. Magdy Abd El-Hamid; President of the Association for the Advancement of the Community Participation, explained that the constitution is an ongoing process, which will not end by the referendum, not an easy process, and the Human Rights articles came as a result of great cooperation.
Chancellor Mahmoud Zaki member in the state Council, stated that the Judicial Article is one of the most important articles in the constitution and that the first Egyptian Constitution was issued in 1882, which included articles concerning the judicial power but it only worked for one year, and as for the 23 constitution, it talked about the Judicial power and it was abolished in 1930 then as a result of the Egyptians struggle it came back to work in 1935. After the 52 revolution the 23 constitution was abolished and the 56 constitution was issued then the 64 constitution, which stated the formation of the supreme constitutional court; whose members number was scaled in the 2012 constitution, this came to restrict their adjudicate power in the constitutional cases. As for 2014 constitution, it came with one control system on all the legislations, laws, and appointment of the members of the supreme constitutional court by the general assembly.
Zaki has further added that, the state council is responsible for the cancellation of all the administrative decisions except the sovereign decisions such as what happened in 1948 when the decision was made to make the nomadic and the Bedouins exempt from the military service, which was in a contrary to the 23 constitution, which emphasized on the equality between citizens.
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