MP proposes allowing female judges in State Council positions

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Tue, 03 Sep 2019 - 10:00 GMT

The State Council in Cairo - FILE

The State Council in Cairo - FILE

CAIRO – 3 September 2019: Member of Parliament Ehab al-Khouli has said he will propose legislative amendments to the State Council law so that it allows the appointment of women in the prestigious judicial body.

Khouli, member of the parliamentary Legislative Affairs Committee, said Monday he will make his bid during the upcoming session. He added that his proposal comes in light of the Egyptian government’s policy in gender equality.

“Experiment has proven that women can bear responsibilities in full success. There is not advanced nation that excludes women as active members,” Khouli said.

Khouli reminisced about the Egyptian society being a pioneer in that aspect, providing examples such as Sameera Moussa, a nuclear physicist who took several steps to allow the medical use of nuclear technology affordable, who died in 1952 in a car accident in the U.S. that is highly suspected to have been an assassination.

He also mentioned Fatma al-Yusuf, a journalist who founded the acclaimed news magazine Rose al-Yusuf in 1952, a major step for a journalist and a woman at the time.
Egyptian judges have consistently fought to assume top positions, but the first major step was taken by former President Hosni Mubarak, when he appointed Tahani al-Gebali as the vice president of the Constitutional Court in 2003.

In July, judge Fatima Qandil was the first woman to sit at a judges panel in an Egyptian criminal court, in another milestone for female judges. The State Council, however, remains a male-only domain.

Article 190 of the 2014 constitution states that “the State Council is an independent judicial body that is exclusively competent to adjudicate in administrative disputes, disciplinary cases and appeals, and disputes pertaining to its decisions. It also solely competent to issue opinions on the legal issues of bodies to be determined by law, review and draft bills and resolutions of a legislative character, and review draft contracts to which the state or any public entity is a party. Other competencies are to be determined by law.”

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