Reviving the National Council for Human Rights


Among the grave errors of ousted President Mohamed Morsi is that he replaced the leaders of Egypt’s National Council for Human Rights, NCHR. The NCHR boasted among its members some of our most distinguished figures, including Dr. Boutros Boutros-Ghali, a former UN secretary-general and one of the country’s most brilliant diplomats and academics. Ghali, who wrote extensively on international politics, is back to the NCHR as an honorary president.

Former Information Minister Muhammad Fa’iq, now chairman of the NCHR, is a prominent specialist in African and was a close associate of President Gamal Abdel Nasser. Fa’iq played a pivotal role in African diplomacy during the period of the liberation movement, a period in which Egypt stood by revolutionaries in various African countries, and played a role in their subsequent transition into national leaders. He is also credited with upgrading Egypt’s foreign state media corps, an effort during which he made me a chief correspondent for Egypt’s radio and television service in Western Europe. During his service as information minister, I was fortunate enough to get to known him personally and was impressed by his creativity and work ethics. When he joined the NCHR at its formation, he brought aboard his invaluable expertise as a co-founder and secretary general of the Arab Organization for Human Rights. His return to NCHR is a sign that the organization is back on track and that it will once again be active in monitoring our performance as a nation in this important area.

The return of these remarkable men to the NCHR is a sign that the errors of the MB-rule are about to be corrected, and that we have a council that works for the whole country and not for the MB’s clan and coterie. At one point, the NCHR was run by Counselor Hosam al-Gheriani, a man who was granted the post as a reward for his activities in the Constitutive Assembly that was in charge of writing the last constitution. Some considered al-Gheriani’s appointment to the NCHR as a form of “privatization”, as it brought the organization under the control of the MB, rather than the whole nation. So, finally, we have an NCHR that can report fairly and voice its opinion without bias.

translated from Al Youm 7

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