Egyptian Doctors Syndicate officially ends strike

Ahram Online, Friday 29 Mar 2013

At the general assembly meeting, which saw scuffles between Brotherhood loyalists and members of independent doctors' groups, there were allegations of serious financial violations

Archive photo of doctors demonstrating at the medical syndicate (Photo: Mai Shaheen)

Gross financial violations were revealed by an official report during the annual general assembly of the Doctors Syndicate on Friday at Al-Qasr Al-Aini Hospital in Cairo.

“A Central Auditing Organisation (CAO) report revealed enormous financial violations and a waste of hundreds of thousands of pounds during the year 2011-2012,” Mohamed Shafiq, member of pressure group Doctors Without Rights, told Ahram Online.

In 2011, leading Brotherhood and Freedom and Justice Party member Essam El-Erian was elected treasurer of the Doctors Syndicate.

“It’s El-Erian who should be held accountable for these violations, not the current treasurer,” said Shafiq, who added that the assembly’s budget was approved by members of the syndicate, the majority of whom were pro-Brotherhood, in spite of the discovered violations.

According to Al-Ahram Arabic news website, Khairy Abdel-Dayem, head of the syndicate, also stressed that the report issued by the CAO was concerned with violations that took place before the current assembly take-over.

The meeting witnessed scuffles between the Muslim Brotherhood and Doctors Without Rights and independent doctors’ group Ultras Doctors.

The general assembly has also voted to end the doctors’ strike. The strike began in October 2012 to demand better working conditions for doctors, and was suspended by the assembly in December.

“We didn’t want the strike, nor did we want to end it, we wanted to keep it suspended until the new cadre [a wage structure that provides benefits] is approved, to be able to pressure the assembly,” explained Shafiq, adding that the assembly’s decision to end the strike was due to their affirming that the cadre will be implemented.

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