Egypt’s women will press newly-elected president to appoint female VP: report


Egyptian women will call on the country’s newly-elected president to appoint a woman in the post of Vice President, an Egyptian daily reported on Tuesday.

Head of the National Council for Women (NCW) Mervat al-Talawi was quoted by the state-run al-Ahram daily as saying that she will ask the winner in the country’s forthcoming presidential election to appoint a woman as his Vice President.

“The success of people is usually measured by the vital role played by the woman in development and her active role in the society,” Talawi said.

“I am quite optimistic over the future of Egypt. Egypt is characterized by its multi-component culture enjoyed by both Muslims and Christians,” The NCW chief said during a seminar on women’s roles in Cairo.

“We want to win the battle with the help of religious clerics for the sake of pushing our society towards the better,” she said, adding that the former regime [of president Hosni Mubarak] had delayed the establishment of the NCW for over twenty years.

Egypt’s first presidential election following the ouster of Mubarak is scheduled for May 23-24.

If no outright winner emerges this month, a run-off will be held June 16-17.
Many members of the newly-elected, and majority Islamist parliament, have been accused of launching attacks against women’s rights in the country.

They wish to cancel many laws that promote women’s rights, alleging that these laws were “aiming to destroy families” and have said that many laws were passed to please the former first lady of the fallen regime, Suzanne Mubarak, who devoted much of her attention to the issues of granting the women all her rights.

The parliamentary attacks on women’s rights has drawn great criticism from women’s organizations, who dismissed the calls and accused the MPs of wishing to destroy the little gains Egyptian women attained after long years of organized struggle.

(Translation and writing by Abeer Tayel)