Egyptian Justice Minister has referred a member of the Judges’ Club Board to a disciplinary panel.
While the Egyptian Judges’ Club prepares for declaring its attitude towards president Mubarak’s proposed constitutional amendments which will be decided by the People’s Assembly and Shura Council (lower and upper chambers of parliament) within the coming days, counselor Mamdouh Marie, the Justice Minister, stunned the judges with decision that recalled to minds the crisis that erupted between his predecessor counselor Mahmud Abulail, the ex-Justice Minister and the judges after he transferred counselors Mahmoud Makki and Hisham Al Bstawesi to a disciplinary board.
Counselor Marie issued a decision of referring judge Hamdi Rafik, a member of the Judges’ Club Board of Directors, to a disciplinary board; the disciplinary board decided, in the notice sent to the stated judge, that the date of the sentence hearing session will be next Saturday March, 17, 2007, without giving the main reason for this unjustified measure.
This decision comes hours before the Judges’ Club, led by counselor Zakariya Abdul Aziz, holds an emergency meeting on Sunday evening to declare their attitude towards the proposed constitutional amendments, especially amending articles related to justice and the judiciary. The club is to agree on a complete report that includes views, suggestions and researches of lawmen and judges, to lodge it, after presenting it to the club board of directors, to the People’s Assembly in the meeting that the judges will hold later with the speaker Dr. Fathi Serour.
Referring to a disciplinary panel is the toughest decision that may be taken against any judge. This is because the panel’s ruling may lead to relieving the judge of his judicial post, transferring him to a non-judicial job or overturning the decision of referring him to the panel due to legal and objective reasons. A disciplinary board consists of 7 top judges headed by counselor Moqbel Shaker, the chief justice of the Court of Cassation and chief justice of the Supreme Judicial Council.
On his first reaction to this decision, counselor, Mahmoud Al Khodairi, the deputy chief justice of the Court of Cassation and chairperson of the Judges’ Club in Alexandria, denounced it, confirming in press statements to Ikhwanweb that this troublesome decision is an attempt to distract the judges from following up the developments related to the proposed constitutional amendments, in order to distract them with a minor issue.
Al Khodairi stressed that the judges are well ware of this point, and they will work hard to be focus on the main issue, the constitutional amendments, because it is the issue of the country as a whole, not an issue for the judges alone.
"We will give a surprise in our meeting a few hours later concerning this issue" he added.
Al Khodairi wondered: Who deserves to be held accountable and referred to a disciplinary panel: A judge who gathers statements to increase the members subscriptions ", a duty for which a judge should be rewarded " or the judges who were implicated in rigging the election process that who lost their credibility, and are, in spite of these violations, still doing their job and are entrusted with lives, money and honors of citizens, especially after they were proved to be implicated in these violations?!!
Al Khodairi described this decision as:" A kind of terrorism, intimidation and foolishness, specially that these issues aren’t violations" adding that the Egyptian regime is treating the judges in a very bad manner!!