FILE: Chairman of Al-Wafd Party Bahaa al-Din Abu Shoka
CAIRO – 16 August 2019: Chairman of the 40-year old New Wafd Party Bahaa Abu Shoka has decided to form a legal committee former of law and legal affairs professors, to prosecute those who insult the nationalist liberal party.
It has been observed recently that some people have been insulting and slandering the party members, overstepping the right of freedom of opinion and constructive criticism, the decree read.
This comes after the party announced dropping the membership of Al-Sayed Al-Badawi, who served as the president of the party from 2010 to 2018, over losing the "good reputation" membership condition.
Sources said the party decided to remove Badawi's name from all its records, as he failed to settle his disputes with a number of companies within a certain time limit, after he had been handed final imprisonment sentences, according to a memorandum submitted by Fouad al-Badrawi, the party's general secretary.
"The decision deprives Al-Sayed Al-Badawi from running again to head the Wafd Party, as dropping his membership was based on the loss of one of the conditions of membership, which is good reputation and conduct, which was denied [due to] the issuance of criminal provisions against him."
Badawi described the decision to expel him as retaliatory and reckless, adding that it violates the law and party regulations.
Badawi said he cannot explain Abu Shoka's hostility towards him, adding that this hostility needs a psychological explanation as it cannot be politically explained.
The New Wafd is believed to be Egypt’s oldest national liberal party and always played a significant role in the Egyptian political scene. It is linked to the original Wafd Party which was dismantled after the 1952 Revolution. The New Wafd Party was established in 1978.
Wafd has a powerful and coherent internal structure. The party is run by a supreme council that includes 50 members, all elected by the general assembly, and is said to be the highest decision-making body in the party.
Since its re-launch, Wafd has emerged as an influential player in the political arena. The party has the largest network of branches and representatives, covering major cities in all Egyptian governorates.
Wafd has a large membership base, consisting of various social segments,notably a number of political and cultural figures, making the party stand out as one of the few established parties that truly represent the Egyptian street. The party also enjoys a very strong presence in the media thanks to its famous daily newspaper and website.
Additional reporting by Egypt Today Staff