#Egyptian Govt violates 10 articles in the first year of the new Constitution | Egypt Independent

The Constitution of the 30 June revolution is one year old, as former President Adly Mansour had endorsed it on 18 January 2014 after it was approved in a referendum by a 98.1 percent majority.

The new document, enshrining the fundamental values and law of Egypt was welcomed by various political currents who found it met their revolutionary demands. Yet other currents said the Constitution in itself is not as important as the laws that implement its articles.

Hereinbelow are 10 articles of the Constitution followed by a list of violations on the part of the president and the council of ministers by issuing decisions or by failing to implement them in the deadlines set for them:

Article 3

The canons of the Egyptian Christians and Jews are the main source of legislation for their personal and religious affairs, and for choosing their spiritual leaders.

Article 64

Freedom of belief is absolute, and the freedom of religious practice and the establishment of houses of worship for the Abrahamic religions is a right regulated by law.

Article 16

The state is obliged to honor the martyrs of the nation and take care of the injured in the revolution, the veterans, the families of the missing in war and the injured in security operations. It is obliged to provide job opportunities for them as regulated by law. And it encourages civil society organizations to help achieve this goal.

Article 29

Agriculture is a fundamental element of the national economy. The state pledges to protect and increase farmland, and to criminalize any assault on it. It is also committed to the development of rural areas to raise the standard of living of its population and protect them from environmental risk. It commits to developing agricultural and livestock products, promoting their industries and providing their production requirements. It buys strategic crops for a reasonable price that achieves profits for farmers, in agreement with the unions.

Article 32

Natural resources belong to the people. The state is committed to maintaining the natural resources by using them well and without depletion, taking into account the rights of future generations to them. The state also commits to the optimum utilization of renewable energy sources, and promotes investment and scientific research in this field. And it encourages the production of raw material.

State property may not be disposed of. Exploiting natural resources and their public utilities will be on a usufruct basis for a period not to exceed 30 years, and quarries, small mines and salt pans and their public facilities for a period not exceeding 15 years.

Article 67

Freedom of artistic and literary creativity is guaranteed. The state is committed to the advancement of the arts and of literature. It nutures artists and protects their creations. Lawsuits demanding the confiscation of works of art and literature may only pass through the public prosecutor.

There is no imprisonment penalty for public works of art and literature. And the law determines penalties for crimes of incitement to violence or discrimination among citizens. The courts in this case order a compensation for the victims of such crimes in accordance with the law.

Article 124

The law of the state budget should not contain any text that causes citizens to incur new burdens. It defines the fiscal year and the way the budgets of the public institutions and their accounts are devised.

The transfer of amounts from one section to another in the budget, and expenses not mentioned in it or exceeding its estimates must be approved by a law issued by parliament.

Article 145

The President of the Republic cannot throughout the duration of his term personally or by delegation run a private business. He cannot buy or rent any state property, nor can he sell or lease anything to public sector companies. He presents a financial disclosure report at the beginning and at the end of his term, and at the end of each year, to be published in the Official Gazette.

Article 166

The law determines the salaries of the prime minister and the members of the government. They shall not receive any other remuneration, nor shall they personally or by delegation run a private business. They present a financial disclosure report at the beginning and at the end of their terms, and at the end of each year, to be published in the Official Gazette.

Article 237

The state is committed to countering terrorism in all its forms and manifestations according to a timetable. It tracks its sources of funding that threaten the nation and the citizens, while ensuring rights and public freedoms. And the law regulates procedures of the fight against terrorism and fair compensation for its victims.

The violations

1: A court ruling banned the Jewish Abu Hasira celebration and ordered the demolition of the Jewish shrine and deleting it from the records of the Antiquities Ministry.

2: The Council of Ministers and the National Council for Care of the Families of the Revolution Martyrs and Wounded announced that 840 civilians died and 6,312 others were wounded since the 25 January revolution until the events of the Council of Ministers in December 2011, which means they do not recognize any victims after that date.

3: Minister of Agriculture Adel al-Beltagy said the government will not provide any subsidies for the cultivation and marketing of cotton, and will not buy it from farmers. He called on farmers to market it themselves before cultivating it without any intervention by the government.

4: Articles 22, 24 and 28 of the Mineral Resources Law No. 198 of 2014 issued on 9 December allow for renewing licenses of mines, quarries and salt pans for more than 15 years.

5: Prime Minister Ibrahim Mehleb banned the screening in cinema theaters of the film Halawet Roh, starring Haifa Wehbe, Bassem Samra and Mohamed Lotfy.

6: The 2014/2015 state budget was based on a projected return from a decision raising the prices of gasoline, diesel fuel, natural gas and electricity.

7: The president did not publish his financial disclosure report in the Official Gazette until now, although he has been in office for six months, nor did the prime minister and the ministers.

The government and the Interior Ministry has not yet set a timetable for fighting terrorism and restoring security.
via Govt violates 10 articles in the first year of the new Constitution | Egypt Independent.


About angelajoya

Assistant Professor, Middle East Political Economy, at the University of Oregon. Currently writing on the Egyptian revolution and the Syrian crisis.
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