There is no doubt that we are at a critical moment historically, the dominating slogan of which is “hard work and dedication” to build Egypt’s future. I also believe that everyone wishes to see the inclusion of “justice and law enforcement” in the slogan of the moment, without exceptions.
This is evidenced by the constitution and the law’s attention to determining the age of retirement in the state’s administrative body. Even the presidential term is clearly and transparently identified in the constitution, and its modification is prohibited under any circumstances. The purpose of all this is to provide an opportunity to introduce new blood to the Egyptian state and its institutions.
This is also apparent in the decision to determine the maximum wage. President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi set an example by committing to the maximum wage. He even donated half his salary to Egypt. However, in spite of this, some officials unfortunately wish to breach public law, arguing that there are exceptions among the competent officials, some of whose age of retirement could be extended. This is a disaster, because these officials would work to destroy and abolish the competent workforce under them, in order to ensure the longevity of their tenure.
Gentlemen, be aware that by extending the period of service to those figures, you are killing all the spirit and motivation among the lower cadres. Moreover, you are rewarding the officials who have either failed to build a strong workforce, or have intentionally kept out competent people to force their superiors to keep them in office under the pretext of their expertise. Thereby, we find ourselves, knowingly or otherwise, rewarding those who failed to prepare cadres for leadership in Egypt, and who destroyed or drove away potential leaders from their institutions, or ministries.
In developed countries, leaders are assessed upon a number of factors. Among these important factors is how this leader has coached subordinates to take over responsibilities after the end of the leader’s tenure. This encourages the promotion of such individuals to higher posts, by successfully preparing leaders to carry on the responsibly.
I believe that opening the door for exceptions to the retirement age will open a Pandora’s box, eradicating the next generation of competent youth whom we had hoped would be the cornerstone to building Egypt’s future.
If such officials were indeed brilliant and outstanding, they could be employed as consultants in their respective fields. However, unfortunately, corrupt people seek to open the door of exceptions widely, so that in time the exception would become the rule. If this happens, we can say goodbye to the rule of law and respect for the constitution. En era of dinosaur autocrats is imminent, under the pretext of “expertise”. May God protect Egypt and its people.
Abdallah Al-Moghazy is the former assistant to both Prime Minister Sherif Ismail and former prime minister Ibrahim Mehleb. He previously served as the spokesperson for President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi’s electoral campaign. He also held a position on the Youth Advisory Council for the Supreme Council of Armed Forces, and was a spokesperson for the Al-Wafd Party.