A hearing was held for a case demanding the government publicise the conditions of the International Monetary Fund loan on Tuesday in front of the Administrative Judiciary.
Malek Adly, one of the lawyers of the centre that filed the case, the Egyptian Centre for Economic and Social Rights, claimed the loan will affect the prices of housing and goods, as well as exchange rates.
“Our problem with Mubarak is that he was not transparent…Right now, there is no People’s Assembly and Morsy has legislative powers,” he said, saying this caused a problem for the decision on the loan. In order for the loan to be taken, it has to be approved through legislation but since the People’s Assembly is now dissolved, Morsy will be the one who decides.
ECESR lawyer Mohamed Mostafa, who attended the session today, said the centre requested the government disclose the national economic plan it offered the IMF as well as records of all meetings. In addition, the centre demanded that the government disclose all conditions and recommendations the IMF will impose on Egypt if the loan is taken out.
“It is well known that the IMF demands austerity policies from the countries it gives loans too… Examples include, Greece, Algeria and Iraq,” Mostafa said. He said that these austerity measures affect Egyptian citizens. “When subsidies are lifted off fuel… the citizen has the right to know,” Mostafa added.
Adly said that once the information is out and the conditions of the loan are made public, then political, economic and social groups can respond to it. “When the people know, this will affect their support for borrowing,” Mostafa said.
The final ruling on the case has been postponed to December.
The proposed IMF loan, worth $4.8 billion, has come after President Mohamed Morsy held a meeting with Christine Lagarde, managing director of the IMF in August. However, several protests by activists and political parties against the loan have occurred. The latest protest to the loan came on Monday from 17 groups who sent a letter to Lagarde and Prime Minister Hisham Qandil announcing their opposition to the loan.