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Monday, 14 June 2021

Egypt's newly-elected senators get reception party ahead of opening session

A total of 200 Senators are getting their membership cards Sunday and Monday

Gamal Essam El-Din , Sunday 20 Sep 2020
Shura council (Photo:Al-Ahram)
The Senate will convene in the premises of the former Shura Council (Photo:Al-Ahram)
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The committee, led by Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Alaaeddin Fouad, said in a statement Saturday that the new senators will get a reception party Sunday and Monday.
 
"A total of 200 newly-elected senators will have to fill in membership papers and get cards on Sunday and Monday," said the statement.
 
The Senate's acting secretary general, Mahmoud Ismail Othman, is the one in charge of receiving new senators and helping them get their membership cards.
 
Othman told reporters Sunday that the opening session of the newly-elected Senate will be held once all elected senators get their membership cards.
 
"The new Senate will hold its opening meeting once the president of the republic issues a decree in this respect and the names of 100 appointees are declared," said Othman.
 
Othman indicated that the Senate will get down to business once its chairman and two deputies are named. "The Senate's next job will be to draft its internal bylaws and form its committees," said Othman.
 
Othman added that all administrative and financial preparations are ready for the Senate's meetings to kick off soon, once all its 300 members are named.
 
A number of new senators who got their membership cards Sunday told reporters that they hope the newly-created body will help push Egypt's political life forward.
 
Tarek El-Tohami, a Wafdist member, said he hopes that the creation of two parliamentary chambers in Egypt – the House of Representatives and the Senate – will help improve the legislative process and widen the scope of political participation.
 
Mahmoud Bakri, a journalist and a Mostaqbal Watan Party member, said each new senator is required to write the name of the committee he/she wants to join. Bakri said he wants to join the Senate's media committee.
 
"Egypt is currently facing a hostile media war and I hope that the Senate will make a big contribution in this respect," said Bakri.
 
One-month-long Senate elections were concluded 16 September. The final results of the election show that pro-government Mostaqbal Watan (Future of Homeland) Party candidates won the majority of 200 contested seats – some 130 (around 70 per cent), followed by the People's Republican Party (6 seats), Al-Wafd (6 seats), and independents (6 seats).
 
The political parties of El-Tagammu, the Congress, Modern Egypt, Reform and Development, Guardians of the Nation, the National Movement, and the Egyptian Social Democratic Party ook the remaining seats.
 
The Senate does not comprise any Islamist members. The Nour Party, the only Islamist force that contested the Senate elections, failed to win a single seat.
 
While women were able to secure 17 places in the Senate, the president must appoint another three, bringing the total number of women to 20.
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