Egypt Judges Club head El-Zend slams draft Judicial Authority Law

Sayed Gamal El-Din , Monday 22 Apr 2013

Judges Club head Ahmed El-Zend says judges will stand against proposed Judicial Authority Law, holds Muslim Brotherhood responsible for perceived 'insults' to Egypt's judiciary


Egyptian Judges Club head Ahmed El-Zend voiced his rejection of a recently proposed Judicial Authority Law, asserting that the draft legislation targeted judges and Egypt's judiciary.

"All judges will stand against the Brotherhoodisation of the judiciary and against those who aim to lower the retirement age for judges," El-Zend declared at a Monday press conference.

El-Zend's statements come as Egypt's Shura Council prepares to discuss a draft Judicial Authority Law that would effectively retire over 3,000 judges.

The Shura Council, currently endowed with legislative authority, is the upper house of Egypt's parliament.

El-Zend also blasted recent calls for a "purge" of Egypt's judiciary, saying such calls aimed at "Egypt's destruction."

The proposed Judicial Authority Law, he added, "faces numerous appeals. Legally, the Shura Council shouldn't even consider it."

El-Zend urged Egyptian political parties, especially the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party, the Salafist Nour Party and the moderate-Islamist Wasat Party – the latter of which initially tabled the legislation – not to consider the law, "so as not to become a tool for the destruction of the state."

"This attack [on the judiciary], which is sanctioned by the ruling party, should be resisted," he said, asserting that the Brotherhood had stood behind recent demonstrations that he described as "insults" to Egypt's judiciary.

Frequent accusations of judicial corruption, El-Zend added, were part of a "futile plan to destroy Egypt." He went on to say that he planned to file legal complaints against anyone who aimed to tarnish the judiciary's image.

On Friday, thousands of supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood and its Islamist allies demonstrated at the High Court in Cairo to demand a "purge" of Egypt's "corrupt judiciary." The protest turned violent when the rally was attacked by anti-Brotherhood demonstrators.

On Sunday, Justice Minister Ahmed Mekki announced his resignation to protest Brotherhood allegations of judicial corruption.

On Monday morning, President Mohamed Morsi – who hails from the Muslim Brotherhood – met with members of Egypt's Supreme Judicial Council and Prosecutor-General Talaat Abdullah to discuss the ongoing crisis with the judiciary. 

Short link: