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Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Three branches of government on the outs over amendments to the Judicial codes; Pope Tawadros discusses plight of Christians in Sinai

The spat between the judiciary and House of Representatives over controversial amendments to the judicial code dominated the airwaves last night, after the House’s Legislative Committee signed off on the proposed changes, incurring the wrath of the judiciary.

Some background on what may be a politically charged issue in the weeks ahead: The amendments, among other things, would give the president the power to appoint the head of the Court of Cassation and the head of the Supreme Judicial Council, a power that currently rests with the judiciary. The Judges’ Club (effectively the union of Egypt’s judges) objected to the amendments and called for a meeting on Wednesday with members of the Supreme Judicial Council to discuss the matter. The Judges Club also intends to propose its own amendments to the code, according to Al Shorouk.

Judges to ask El Sisi to intervene: The Judges Club plan to meet with President Abdel Fattah El Sisi “as soon as possible” to discuss the amendments, which they perceived as “insulting” for stripping the judiciary from the right to elect its own leaders, Club head Mohamed Abdel Mohsen told Yahduth fi Masr’s Sherif Amer. The Club intends to propose its own amendments to the legislation, Abdel Mohsen confirmed.

Kol Youm’s Amr Adib also spoke to Abdel Mohsen, who said that the draft proposal is seen as a threat to the independence of the judiciary and risks creating a rift between state’s executive and judicial branches of government. (watch, runtime 8:00).

On Hona Al Asema, Lamees El Hadidi was also on the case. The host spoke to MP Alaa Abdel Moneim, who had objected to the amendments during the day’s vote “because the judiciary was not consulted first about them” and so they’re in violation of the constitution. Legislative Committee chair Mohamed Helmy El Sherif however told Lamees that the House is in touch with the Supreme Judicial Council (watch, runtime 5:08).

For the rest of her episode, Lamees hosted Pope Tawadros II, who revisited the plight of the Coptic citizens who have been displaced from their homes in North Sinai due to Islamist terror, calling it an attempt to “divide Egypt.” He went on to praise the state for its swift action to aid the families (watch, runtime 3:10).

Meanwhile on Masaa DMC, host Eman El Hossary spoke to Deputy Housing Minister Ahmed Adel Darwish on the issue of the Maspero Triangle, where around 4,500 families currently reside. Darwish told El Hossary that 15% of these families completed their paperwork for an anticipated move from the slum over the last three days, while others should be finalizing their forms over the coming three weeks (watch, runtime 6:59).

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