- Middle East/North Africa
On Saturday Cairo University’s Faculty of Arts appointed Professor Randa Abu Bakr as its first elected dean, university sources said.
Abu Bakr, an English language professor, is a member of the 9 March Movement, a group that have campaigned against security interference in academic affairs. She won 73 votes, heading off her closest competitor, Essam Hamza from the Japanese Department, with four votes. Seven professors ran for the post. Three hundred and sixteen professors out of 376 took part in the poll, that is, 88 percent.
During the reign of former president Hosni Mubarak, top university positions were filled by appointment rather than elections.
The notorious, now-disbanded State Security Investigative Services (SSIS) intervened in the selection of deans for the past four decades, excluding all anti-regime figures.
Translated from the Arabic Edition