Egypt Journalists Syndicate relieves chair of housing committee chair over violations

Ahram Online , Thursday 28 Sep 2023

Egypt's Journalists Syndicate relieved Chair of the Housing Committee Abdel-Raouf Khalifa of his duties, referring him to an internal investigation on accusations of establishing an illegal association that runs parallel to the syndicate itself.

Egypt s Journalists Syndicate
File Photo: Logo of Egypt's Journalists Syndicate at its headquarters in downtown Cairo. Al-Ahram


During an emergency meeting on Wednesday, the syndicate's board expressed strong disapproval of Khalifa's actions, reiterating their commitment to taking all necessary legal measures to put an end to the activities of this association, according to a statement by Gamal Abdel-Rahim, the secretary-general of the syndicate.

Khalifa was absent from the meeting without providing prior notice, according to the syndicate's statement.

The case dates back to April when Khalifa, head of the Housing Committee, proposed the creation of an NGO called the "Journalism Association for Services and Development."

The aim was to provide additional services to syndicate members. However, Khalifa unilaterally established the association, disregarding the board's agreement in May that stipulated the entity should be established under the syndicate board's supervision, as it intended to serve its members.

This was highlighted in a statement by the Head of the Journalists Syndicate Khaled El-Balshy.

Consequently, the syndicate relieved Khalifa of his position as the head of the Housing Committee, citing his violation of the board's decision, the syndicate's norms, and the law governing civil associations, as stated in the syndicate's official statement.

The decision to initiate an investigation against Khalifa was prompted by a complaint lodged by 189 journalists, according to Abdel-Rahim.

In his statement, El-Balshy stated that he had previously attempted to dissuade Khalifa from pursuing such a course of action but was unsuccessful.

Khalifa claimed that he took this step unilaterally because "security bodies" rejected El-Balshy's assumption of the association's presidency, citing his opposition status.

El-Balshy clarified that Khalifa was attempting to misrepresent the situation as a dispute over the association's presidency, while the actual issue was the association's establishment under the syndicate's board supervision, as agreed upon.

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