The tasks of the “sheikhs” … the cleanliness of the schools … and the losses of the “rice”


Many colleagues emphasized in their articles and reports that the new Senate did not have a real legislative chamber, and there was no need to revive it as long as it could not hold accountable or monitor the government. The amended constitution removed most of the legislative and oversight tasks that were available to the Shura Council before its abolition.

I do not agree with what they were saying. The Senate is an important entity, and we have to deal with it. There are six articles in the constitution that define the work of “elders” (from articles 248 to 254), including one that explicitly states the inability of the council to hold the government to account: “The prime minister, his deputies, ministers and other members of the government are not accountable to the Senate” (Article 253).

What interests me most about the tasks of the new Senate and its deputies is this vital function, which I claim that if the “elders” perform it properly, it is sufficient and adequate. Consider the text of Article 248: “The Senate shall study and propose what it deems to be capable of consolidating the foundations of democracy, supporting social peace, the basic foundations of society and its supreme values, rights, freedoms and public duties, and deepening the democratic system and expanding its fields.».

Many articles in our constitution are completely suspended for many reasons. Let us encourage the Senate to implement this article as it is. We are struggling to consolidate the democratic architecture of the state. The current reality of the parties attests to this. Its results in previous elections and its current performance confirm that they are cartoon entities. The Senate, with its current formation and the state of harmony in its structure, qualify it for that. If only the “sheikhs” would do so calmly and professionally. Their discussions and reports should not begin with an ideal of the democratic and human rights landscape. They should not start from reviewing the “international conspiracies and the fourth and fifth generation wars that we face.”».

I am optimistic about the Senate. Part of this case is behind this unprecedented number of journalist and media colleagues and friends. There are about ten, most of them from the independent press, with which Ashraf belong.

Let them open the public and private media file. And here I am wondering about the possibility of the council’s supervision of media organizations as was the case with the Shura Council.

In particular, the private press needs someone to take care of it. We will not find more capable “sheikhs” colleagues who have reached the position of chief editor of special publications. They are more able to convince the rest of the sheikhs, MPs and higher executive bodies that our survival and stability is in the public interest. And that opposing the regime or criticizing its decisions, laws or projects, or some of them, does not mean at all to demolish the rules of the state. A system defined by law and monitored by legislative councils. And whoever transgresses, he exposes himself to legal accountability.

I am optimistic about the current formation of the Senate. But it is optimism that is conditional upon him being honestly and boldly studying the files of freedoms, democracy and the media, and submitting proposals regarding them to the president, the parliament and the government..

School hygiene

In this space, I tried to make a journalistic effort closer to a short investigation, and to answer one question: Why was cleanliness absent in our public schools, even the new ones? Let us agree that the scene witnessed by the governor of Dakahlia included completely unclean chapters. Dust above the seats, doors and windows. We, of course, disagree with him in his superior way with the director and bullying her as if he was descended from heaven and infallible from accountability, although he changed his chair near Neil Mansoura four governors in less than five years.

I return to my idea that stems from the scarcity of messengers in schools, and sometimes their absence altogether. Employment austerity began with the simple workers wages. The Ministry of Education and other ministries stopped hiring workers. To be honest, this approach preceded current economic decisions by years. It was started by Dr. Nazif’s government, not only with cleaners but with staff and teachers. Each small or middle school had a group of no fewer than four or five workers.

The number of workers has shrunk as thousands are retiring annually. The situation in schools has become disastrous, as its situation differs, of course, from the rest of the government departments by dealing for long hours with students, teachers and administrators. I tried to get the number of workers in schools now compared to what was before the austerity, and failed to do so. I had no choice but to ask a number of principals, agents and teachers about their current conditions and how to clean their schools.

I learned that, over the past two decades, schools have resorted to a legal trick approved by education ministers as well as governors … relying on service funds that were part of the private funds, making temporary appointments for cleaning workers, as well as purchasing educational tools, hygiene supplies and other fund resources. School expenses were included in the budgets of these funds, and they were contributing to that apart from the education budget. The decision to annex the private funds of the Ministry of Finance and seize their funds came to destroy this system in all government departments, including schools. Now, there are very poor dues for cleaning that the Ministry of Education allocates to each school, and every principal has to manage and maintain his school and clean it his way..

What I wrote I got to it with a little effort. If the conservative master, who loves photography and hates criticism, made a limited effort, he would reach the same truth. He of course knows very well the number of workers, administrators and teachers in his governorate. He should have asked first about the reasons for the delay in cleaning in school, and how many do so, and pledge to participate in the solution.

Losses of “rice»

«The Egyptian peasant who invented the craft of agriculture ten thousand years ago is the most miserable peasant in the world now … and his profession has become a lost craft, which made the only choice available to him is to emigrate it .. In the 1960s, farmers represented about 55% of the workforce, and the percentage shrank to 35% in The 1990s, then dwindled to 25% in the millennium! … With the withdrawal of peasants from the profession of their ancestors, their participation in the gross national product of their country decreased from 30% to 11% !!! And with it, the percentage of food we imported rose to 65% in a list that includes- What a shame !! – beans, lentils and wheat».

The previous bright lines were taken from the personal page of Dr. Ismail Abdel Jalil, the great scholar and former head of the Desert Research Center.

I intended to write about the cries of the peasants about their loss of the rice crop, whose prices had completely collapsed, so I did not find anything greater than the description given by Abdul Jalil, which previous governments and their apparatus used to resort to and ask him for intellectual support in similar crises.

Dear reader .. And you buy a kilo of traditional Egyptian rice for eight pounds, know that the simple farmer, who is currently in debt to everyone, sold a kilo of barley rice a few weeks ago for only three pounds! And that there is no hope of storing it, as the experiences of the past year lead him to the fact that prices are on the way to collapse.

Through personal experience with my family, where we own a small area as an inheritance from my parents – may God have mercy on him – the acre of rice has taken a heavy toll on the farmers. Note that it was the last resort for the farmer in the summer season after the collapse of cotton by an effective action, and the lack of economic viability of corn. The average yield of an acre of rice is three tons. The price per ton is three thousand pounds. Feddan expenses not less than four thousand. There are two systems for cultivating the land, if its owner is unable to cultivate it himself, then he may hand it over to a farmer in exchange for a share of the crop ranging between a quarter and a third, or rent for each plantation. And that in the range of seven thousand pounds. In other words, the poor farmer lost at least two thousand pounds!.

Europe and America, and in times of economic crises and declining crop prices, resort to supporting their farmers with grants and soft loans, or facilitating the purchase and marketing of these crops, meaning compensation for the farmer, as suggested by Dr. Ismail Abdel Jalil..

We are working against our peasants, so we opened the door to speculate on their livelihoods. The ministers responsible for this file do not care about Al-Falah. We have a market overflowing with imported rice, and we are banning Egyptian rice exports.

The farmer has always been in the heart and mind of the top leadership and decision makers. Now there is a state of estrangement, abandonment and forgetfulness … a state of confusion, which I fear from its economic and political effects.

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