Egypt Independent

Press syndicate denounces passing of press and media regulating law



 Legislative committee of the press syndicate denounced passing the press and media regulating law by the parliament, in a statement on Wednesday.

“The law allows the executive power to take control of media outlets,” the statement read.

Third of the parliament members voted on Wednesday in a public assembly to pass the press and media regulating bill. The syndicate hoped there will be more discussions by the Parliament before the final ratification.

According to the press syndicate, the law violates in many of its articles to what has been previously agreed upon between the syndicate, the national committee for press legislations, and the government during discussions over the past year.

The amendments divided the bill into two parts, by separating between oversight institutions in press and media, the syndicate  previously said in an official statement last week.

Moreover, the latest version which was passed on Wednesday, was further amended by adding articles that allow the President to appoint quarter of the board members for both press and media oversight institutions, the syndicate said. This is, according to the syndicate, a violation to the constitution in its article number 72.

The bill was first drafted over a year ago under the cabinet of Ibrahim Mehleb and was discussed between the cabinet and the syndicate several times. However, earlier this week, the media committee at the parliament semi approved a different version of the bill.

The syndicate then filed a memo utterly rejecting the latest version of the bill.

The law was also vehemently criticized by the press syndicate for including articles that potentially allow arrest of journalists and media personnel in relation with their work.