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Automating the government will greatly assist corruption fight: Judge Abdullah Qandil - Daily News Egypt

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Automating the government will greatly assist corruption fight: Judge Abdullah Qandil

Administrative Prosecution balances state’s administrative apparatus

Counsellor Abdullah Qandil, deputy head of the Administrative Prosecution Authority, has said that the authority has a large role in any development that takes place in Egypt, and that it is important to issue a law on the independence of the authority, especially with there already being a constitutional provision to that effect. Qandil, who is also head of the Authority’s Club, said that the authority is fully prepared for the upcoming parliamentarian elections, stressing his intention not to run for the Presidency of the Administrative Prosecution Club again.

What is the role of the Administrative Prosecution?

The Administrative Prosecution Authority plays a major role in the nation’s battle against corruption according to its independence and impartiality, as the authority is unique among the multiple state agencies that are specialised in fighting corruption as a judicial body and in providing fundamental guarantees to the public employee. This guarantees the impartiality and integrity of the investigation, through several legal procedures safeguarded by the law starting from investigations through the disciplinary court.

What is the difference between the role of the Administrative Control Authority (ACA) and the administrative prosecution?

The fight against corruption is carried out by supervisory bodies or judicial bodies. And the ACA performs all the procedures according to the law regarding controlling crimes and fighting corruption within the state’s administrative apparatus through investigations and obtaining information. And the role of the administrative prosecution picks up from where the administrative control ends, when it refers a report.

After the conclusion of investigations in the administrative prosecution, it refers it to the general prosecution, which, in turn, refers it to court.

What is the role of the Administrative Prosecution Club?

It is an organ that can be confined within civil society organisations. It has an important role as it encourages great sensitive national projects that benefit Egyptian society as well as participate in any tasks required by the state to preserve property and funds.

What legal amendments have brought about a boom in the administrative prosecution’s role?

At the forefront of the amendments that led to a boom in the Administrative Prosecution Authority is the introduction of a constitutional text in the 2012 constitution that establishes the nature of the work of the Administrative Prosecution Authority as a judicial body, and has been assigned expanded competences in administrative and financial irregularities in all state agencies and has given it a large share in the imposition of punishments against employees who commit legal offenses.

What are your reasons for not re-running for the Administrative Prosecution Club presidency?

I spent 10 full years in the Presidency of the Administrative Prosecution Club, including an initial six-year term then a second four-year term. The door to candidacy for the club’s presidency has been opened, and I decided not to run to move out and introduce new blood.

But why were the elections postponed and for how long?

The postponement of the elections is temporary until the club’s statute is amended. The administrative prosecution club until the moment is working under the law regulating civil society, thus under the Ministry of Social Solidarity, which has sent us a letter to adjust the situation of the club and match law 149 of 2019. The members of the prosecution will work on amending the bylaws of the club. Finally, the board has the right to set the date of the elections or postpone it.

What is the reason for the delay in the issuance of the Authority’s Independence Law despite the existence of a constitutional text?

Every constitutional text requires a law, and as for the constitutional text on the independence of the Administrative Prosecution Authority, it is likely that it will be issued, but perhaps Parliament is currently busy with more important tasks that affect the state or society. Since the authority is working in full power, there is no problem in delays. The law is expected to be issued in conjunction with the Law of the Judicial Authority.

What are the most prominent pending issues of the authority?

We have no pending laws except the law on the independence of the authority. The constitution puts the text under implementation, so we are sure it will be issued and will include the mechanism for the jurisdiction, which is to impose punishment.

What is the role of the Administrative Prosecution in the elections, especially with Parliament elections approaching?

The Administrative Prosecution Authority has been following up on elections for decades, but what is new is the absolute equality between members of the Administrative Prosecution and their counterparts in other judicial bodies. This means that we will supervise all elections, whether parliamentary, presidential, or otherwise.

What distinguishes the Administrative Judicial Authority professionally from any other judicial body?

The difference in this matter is a very important distinction, which is that the authority is directly related to the administrative apparatus of the state, which is the state’s backbone. Therefore, the authority plays a pivotal and very important role in maintaining balance and preventing any matters that would harm the state’s public interest.  For anyone undertaking work in the governmental apparatus, the administrative prosecution is responsible for determining their responsibility and evaluating their work or taking corrective actions in the event of any financial or in-kind violations within the administrative apparatus.

What do you think of the idea of automating the government and making it all e-government?

The idea of the e-government that was presented by the president at the last conference is a very impressive one as it would control the performance of the state in all facilities and services. This method will help reduce administrative corruption in the government apparatus, and eliminate red tape, queues, and crowds in all facilities.

Also, the idea of automating the government is one of the most important and most prominent idea in our time as it will shorten time and effort.

Government service that would usually take days would now be done within minutes using electronic services. It helps employees and citizens complete their tasks faster with less effort. It also helps in developing the culture of the Egyptian citizen and develop their capabilities and culture, education, and training, allowing them to perform better in their work or daily life by getting used to the system. It is very important that everything in the state be developed electronically in order to keep pace with world developments.

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