Today, Tuesday, November 28, 2023, the Egyptian Coalition for Human Rights and Development issues the eighth report on the presidential elections entitled “Human Rights in The Programs of Candidates for The 2024 Presidential Elections”, which deals with a quantitative and qualitative analysis of the various human rights programs and speeches of the candidates for the 2024 presidential elections, and determines the extent of their ability to express reality and provide solutions to the most prominent human rights problems facing the Egyptian people.
The report indicated that Mr. candidate Abdel Fattah El-Sisi stressed in many speeches addressed to the Egyptian people respect for all pledging obligations related to human rights and fundamental freedoms, and that what he seeks is to ensure that Egyptian society enjoys its full rights, in a way that guarantees the nation its security and stability, which requires making every effort, more sincere effort and diligent work to advance human rights, as well as strengthening continuing efforts to ensure the preservation of the dignity of the Egyptian citizen. His vision for human rights is based on a number of basic principles, most notably that all rights and freedoms are interconnected and complementary, and that there is a close connection between democracy and human rights, with the importance of achieving a balance between rights and duties, and between the rights of the individual and society, and the necessity of combating corruption to ensure the enjoyment of rights and freedoms.
As for Mr. Farid Zahran, his first interest in his electoral program was to establish a commission to combat all forms of discrimination, which would report to the House of Representatives: in accordance with the constitutional entitlement, and enjoy independence, transparency and effectiveness, and obligate all state agencies to assist the commission and establish a prosecution and a specialized court to quickly adjudicate discrimination cases.
Also, approving the principle of transparency and availability of information, calling for an Arab summit to approve just solutions to the issue of the Palestinian people, supporting the establishment of a sovereign Palestinian state, and building regional integration by activating all Arab, regional and international frameworks.
Directing the government to prepare a draft general budget for the state that adheres to the constitutional percentages stipulated for education, health and scientific research while building a culture of health and education to advance the citizen.
Issuing a comprehensive amnesty for all those imprisoned in opinion cases, amending the laws of pretrial detention, criminal procedures, and terrorist entities, and launching a political initiative for the return of peaceful dissidents from abroad.
The report noted that Mr. Hazem Omar’s electoral program for the next stage related to human rights:
Reducing the intensity of the current political polarization, improving the field of political action, opening the public sphere, supporting parties, consolidating party life at its head, and consolidating the foundations of democracy and mechanisms for the peaceful transfer of power.
Successfully addressing the difficult economic and social challenges facing the Egyptian state, raising the state’s economic and financial efficiency and restructuring citizens’ economic burdens with a comprehensive social justice perspective.
Advancing human rights and achieving a fair balance between Egyptian national security requirements and public and private rights and freedoms.
Meanwhile, we find that Mr. Abdul-Sanad Yamama indicated in his electoral program, the first axis of education reform, that the solution is to form a specialized national committee and assign it to submit a report on education reform in Egypt. This solution requires political will, a sufficient budget, a national council for supreme policy to monitor the educational process –whose policies do not change by changing minister-, and separating of politics from education.
Regarding legislative reform, he indicated that his vision for legislative reform is essentially the principle of separation of powers, and he envisions adding constitutional provisions for the Senate to exercise the legislative session and making it a partner with the House of Representatives in exercising legislative authority.
The report concluded with an analysis of the content of the candidates’ programmes, which are as follows:
• The programs of Mr. Abdel Fattah El-Sisi and Mr. Farid Zahran are more in-depth and more aware of the importance of the human rights file, and this appears through the details of their precise vision of this important file and the importance of diligent work to develop it.
• The interest of Mr. Farid Zahran’s program in civil and political rights, which is the dominant feature of his presidential program in more than one place, and the Egyptian state’s commitment to all international covenants and agreements regulating civil, political, economic, social and cultural human rights.
• Emphasizing Mr. Farid Zahran’s interest in the importance of international and Egyptian non-governmental organizations in supporting the human rights situation in Egypt
• The comprehensive vision of the human rights file of candidate Abdel Fattah El-Sisi for all economic, social, cultural, civil and political rights and the Egyptian state’s commitment to all international covenants and agreements regulating civil, political, economic, social and cultural human rights.
• Mr. Abdel Fattah El-Sisi’s interest in the file of Egyptians abroad, which is confirmed by his campaign’s numerous meetings with a number of Egyptians abroad.
• The predominant feature of the program of the candidate, Mr. Hazem Omar, is economic and discusses purely economic matters, which is the predominant feature of his program at the expense of human rights.
• Interest in education is the dominant characteristic of all candidates in their programs, as they are aware of its importance for the advancement of society.
• The inhumane conditions in Gaza dominate the statements of all candidates.
• The electoral program of Mr. Candidate Abdel-Sanad Yamama was devoid of specific and direct talk about human rights in Egypt, and he did not present through his program a clear vision for advancing the human rights file or presenting a vision about the challenges facing this file.