During its latest staff meeting, Cairo University faculty approved on Monday the Supreme Council of Universities’ decision to allow police forces on campus during the mid-year exams.
The decision allows armed and uniformed police personnel to be on campus during the examination process, reported state-run news agency MENA. The implementation of the decision was to be coordinated by each university’s president.
Cairo University’s staff meeting, led by university president Gaber Nassar, agreed on certain procedures to secure school halls during this year’s mid-year exams, which last from 22 December until 23 January, according to a statement posted on the university’s official website. The procedures would involve heavy administrative security presence around exams’ halls, as well as establishing crisis management committees within each faculty and allowing each faculty’s dean to confront and resolve incidents should they occur.
Nassar stressed that the staff council agreed that “there shall be no lenience towards any acts which aim to stall the examination process,” adding that those behind such acts will be prosecuted.
Cairo University’s staff council also approved the decision of Prime Minister Hazem El-Beblawi’s cabinet listing the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organisation. The council added that it is waiting on a formal notification of the same decision to be applied to all those “who support terrorism or verbally exercise it”.
Following its weekly meeting on Wednesday, the Egyptian interim cabinet announced officially listing the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organisation, adding that it will be legally accountable under Article 86 of the Egyptian Penal Code.
The Supreme Council of Universities, led by interim Minister of Higher Education Hossam Eissa, decided to implement the cabinet’s decision on Muslim Brotherhood protests organised on university campuses. The council also agreed to ban protesting on campus during final exams and established a committee, headed by Nassar, to amend the law regulating universities and its executive bylaws in a manner that would achieve “discipline” inside university campuses.
The Cairo Court for Urgent Matters banned on Monday on-campus protests, except those that obtain a permit from the president of the university on which the protest will be held.
The court’s decision comes in the wake of daily violence on university campuses nationwide since the start of the academic year in September, which has left at least four students killed.
Security forces were first allowed into Al-Azhar University after violence erupted on university campus on 30 October.
Shortly afterwards, Prime Minister Hazem El-Beblawi announced that police forces would be present at the gates of all public universities to help maintain security. El-Beblawi’s cabinet gave university presidents the right to request the entry of police forces on to the campus in case of “threats to individuals, property or students”.
Until 2009, the Ministry of Interior was responsible for providing Homeland Security personnel to secure universities. In 2009, the Administrative Court overruled this decision, establishing an “administrative” university security. This decision barring Homeland Security from university campuses did not go into effect until the 2011 revolution.