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Not enough women in cabinet: NCW

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National council for women criticises lack of female decision makers in Al-Sisi’s government

A handout picture made available on June 17, 2014 by the Egyptian presidency shows Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi (C) meeting with the members of Egypt's new government at the presidential palace in Cairo, after the 34-member government was sworn in. (AFP PHOTO / HO / EGYPTIAN PRESIDENCY)

A handout picture made available on June 17, 2014 by the Egyptian presidency shows Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi (C) meeting with the members of Egypt’s new government at the presidential palace in Cairo, after the 34-member government was sworn in.
(AFP PHOTO / HO / EGYPTIAN PRESIDENCY)

The National Council for Women (NCW) panned the lack of female members of President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi newly-appointed in a Wednesday statement.

According to the NCW chairperson Mervat Tellawy, the appointment of only four female ministers in a cabinet of 34 is inconsistent with Al-Sisi promise that women would hold more prominent leadership and decision-making positions in Egypt’s incoming government.

“Women will continue to fight and struggle to take their rightful place in all decision-making positions,” said Tellawy.

Tellawy said she is eagerly awaiting a government that “has adopted a new thinking that reflects the true faith capabilities of Egyptian women, and is conducive to change the culture about the roles of women”.

In a statement by women’s rights initiative Fouda Watch, the campaign criticised the decreasing number of women in the cabinet—16% of ministers were women in Prime Minister Hazem Beblawi’s cabinet, while only 12% of the ministers are female in the cabinet sworn in on Tuesday.

Fouda Watch was disappointed be the decision, even though Al-Sisi offered “praise and affirmation and emphasis on the role of Egyptian women, and their active participation in the formulation of the road map”.

Only one new female minister has been appointed to the cabinet. Najla Al-Ahwani will head the newly created Ministry of International cooperation. Ghada Wali will retain her post as Minister of Social Solidarity, while Nahed Al-Ashry remains Minister of Manpower.

Laila Iskander, who previously served as Minister of the Environment, will now head up the newly-created Ministry of Urban Development.

About the author

Aaron T. Rose

Aaron T. Rose is an American journalist in Cairo. Follow him on Twitter: @Aaron_T_Rose


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