The Center for Trade Union and Workers Services
Launches its Report on the Absurd Scenario of Trade Union Elections
On November 10, 2018, CTUWS launched in its Qasr El Aini Street location a report titled “The Absurd Scenario” about the trade union elections for the cycle 2018-2022.
The event was attended by representatives of political parties, experts in social legislations, trade unionists and workers. Among the participants, we note the presence of Dr. Ahmad Hassan El Borai, former Minister of Labor, Mr. Mohamad Anouar El Sadate, president of the Reform and Development Party, Mr. Farid Zahran, president of the Social Democratic Party, Mr. Georges Ishaaq, member of the National Council for Human Rights, Mr. Elhami El Mirghani, vice president of the Popular Alliance Socialist Party, Eng. Emad Attia, Eng. Akram Ismail and Lawyer Ahmad Fawzi all three members of the Bread and Freedom Party. In addition, participants included Nawla Darwiche, feminist activist, Lawyer Magda Rashwan, representative of the Egyptian Socialist Party under establishment, Dr. Raafat Hussein, Teacher of Social Legislations, and Dr. Niyazi Moustafa, expert in legal legislations.
Kamal Abbas, CTUWS general coordinator, exposed the main issues included in the report, mainly the violations that occurred during the electoral phase and those pertaining to the previous round for the readjustment of legal status; actually, the latter led to the deprivation of a huge amount of active independent trade unions from obtaining a legal status and the impossibility of their leaders to run for elections.
In his speech, Abbas mentioned that the Ministry of Labor is still practicing the same absurd scenario with trade unions willing to be registered under Law 213/2017.
In turn, Dr. Amal Abdel Hamid, coordinator of the Permanent Conference of Working Women, presented the methodology that was used in preparing the report and explained the process of monitoring and following-up the elections that was conducted within a state of organizational chaos on behalf of the Administration reflected in the late opening of the ballots’ commissions, the mass exclusion of candidates in order to get rid of the unwanted ones and enabling the candidates of the “governmental” Federation and their sons to win uncontested in order to ensure full hegemony over the General Federation.
Rahma Refaat, program coordinator in CTUWS, referred to the defective legislative environment under which the elections were conducted accompanied with the absence of any social monitoring or media coverage and coupled with an extreme lack of available information.
Refaat also pointed out to the tight time-schedule (of only one week) to prepare and present applications, make appeals, and the publication of final lists of candidates. In addition, unjustified disqualifications lacking any legal support were the norm against persona non grata. Actually, disqualified candidates were excluded on the same day of the elections; consequently, many of them weren’t even sure whether they were candidates or not, and voters were confused about who were exactly the candidates they were going to elect.
Representatives of political parties confirmed the necessity of strengthening networking between trade unions and parties in this crucial moment when all support is needed. Participants thanked CTUWS for the report as well as its role during a period witnessing an important contraction in the space of the civil society.
After these remarks, the floor was opened for the questions of journalists and representatives of trade unions about the report and the impact of all the incidents it includes on the trade union movement.
To read The booklet click here