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Egypt rights group proposes election draft law
Egypt rights group proposes election draft law
The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights (EOHR) submitted on Sunday a draft law for general elections and a referendum to Parliament for an alternative draft law for the Political Rights law no.
Thursday, April 22,2010 22:02
by Mohamed Abdel Salam BM&Ikhwanweb

CAIRO: The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights (EOHR) submitted on Sunday a draft law for general elections and a referendum to Parliament for an alternative draft law for the Political Rights law no. 37 of 1956. The organization has called for amendments of the law passed in 2005, “in line with the principles and codes of universal human rights, especially regarding the right to the management of public affairs.”

Hafez Abu Saeda, the EOHR’s director explained that achieving political reform “in general and electoral reform in particular, requires the introduction of a lot of amendments to the law on political rights.” He added that his organization “considered proposing a new draft law because the current law with amendments does not respond to international changes and ensure the right of citizens’ participation in the management of the country’s affairs effectively, given the criticisms that were directed to the current law in the development of obstacles to such participation.”

The rights organization said in their statement on the proposal that “mainly with the executive authority`s complete domination over all stages of the electoral process, preparing the voters list is under the tutelage and supervision of the ministry of the interior as well as the executive’s complete control on all procedures for nomination and election campaigning identification on election day and delimitation of constituencies.”

The move comes as youth from the 6 April Student Movement have taken to the streets in two successive weekly protests calling for constitutional change in the country. They were met with violence from the police and a handful of the activists were beaten and arrested during the demonstrations.

Abu Saeda added that the proposed draft law consists of 10 items containing 79 articles and includes “the electoral rights and functioning; electoral ballots; organizing referendums and election; the competent authority supervising the elections and the formation of public commissions, and extended and Sub-Assembly election.”

The draft law also addresses “electoral propaganda, the voting process and counting, the announcement of the result of election or referendum, election appeals and election crimes.”

The EOHR stressed the importance of empowering civil society organizations in monitoring inside and outside the government’s committees, adding that the draft law states that the “process of checking the votes should be in public and to enable candidates and their agents and organizations to attend this process of checking each ballot at the election headquarters and the submission of a copy to the candidates and their agents.”

The Egyptian organization will hold a meeting this week with a committee of legal experts and a group of specialists and a number of representatives from political parties and the parliament and a group of human rights activists to discuss the proposed law.

Republished with permission from bikya masr

tags: EOHR / Political Rights / Universal Human Rights / 6 April / Demonstrations
Posted in Human Rights  
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