President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi holds a meeting with Prime Minister Mustafa Madbouli and Minister of State for Information Osama Heikal - The Egyptian Presidency
CAIRO – 26 April 2020: Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El Sisi on Sunday urged media platforms to stick to full transparency and objectivity when covering crises, to avoid the spread of rumors, the Presidency said in a statement.
In a meeting with Prime Minister Mustafa Madbouli and Minister of State for Information Osama Heikal, Sisi also urged coordination between media and state institutions while dealing with the updates of crises, said Presidential spokesman Bassam Radi.
He called for enhancing the role of media within the framework of the state’s efforts to build the Egyptian intellectual and cultural personality.
During the meeting, Heikal reviewed a vision to develop the state's media policy in light of various regional and international developments, based on achieving the optimal utilization of human capabilities and experience.
Heikal is the first state minister of the information ministry after it was reinstated in December last year. He also was chosen as the first information minister in Egypt after the January 25 Revolution between July 2011 and December 2011.
The Egyptian state has focused on refuting rumors and urging citizens to take information only from official and credible sources. Also, those who intentionally spread rumors about the novel coronavirus can face a five-year imprisonment sentence, the public prosecution said late in March.
In a press statement, the prosecution said that legal action will be taken in conformity with articles no. (80), (102) and (188) of the criminal law.
Egypt’s Ministry of Health announced Saturday 227 new coronavirus, COVID-19 confirmed cases, while 13 people died from the virus.
Health Ministry Spokesman Khaled Megahed said that all of the new cases are Egyptians.
The new cases raise the total number of confirmed COVID-19 patients in Egypt to 4319 and deaths to 307, Megahed added.
The number of coronavirus cases whose tests turned from positive to negative increased to 1450, including 1114 people who recovered from the virus. All positive cases were quarantined at hospitals, the spokesman said.
The representative of the World Health Organization in Egypt John Jabbour, said the counts of coronavirus patients in Egypt are not disturbing.