Egypt’s Journalist Syndicate announced on Thursday that the mid-term elections will be held as scheduled on 5 March, ending a month of uncertainty about the fate of the elections owing to fears over the coronavirus.
In an official statement, the syndicate summoned members of the general assembly to register attendance at the syndicate’s headquarters on Friday 5 March by 10am, in order to elect a new syndicate head and six board members.
The quorum for holding the syndicate's elections is 50 percent plus one member of the general assembly.
The syndicate said the assembly would be postponed two weeks if quorum is not reached on Friday.
The quorum for a repeat general assembly is 25 percent plus one member.
The syndicate currently has 7,000 members.
Members will vote in the midterm elections, which are held every two years, for half of the board seats — 6 out of 12, in addition to a new head.
The syndicate’s elections supervisory committee has announced that six candidates are vying for the post of syndicate head, which is currently held by Diaa Rashwan, while 55 candidates are competing for board seats.
The syndicate’s announcement came hours after the State Council's legislation and fatwas department decided not to hear a request submitted by the current syndicate head and the Egyptian Supreme Media Regulatory Council (ESMRC) for an opinion on the possibility of postponing the midterm elections due to coronavirus concerns.
The State Council reasoned that a lawsuit over the elections, which is being processed in an administrative court, prevents the council from weighing in over the issue.
The lawsuit was lodged by a candidate for a member seat who is arguing that the Egyptian cabinet should be the entity that approves the holding of the syndicate's elections since the cabinet itself bans all forms of crowding to curtail the spread of the contagion.