Universities will not allow any student to sit for an exam while wearing the niqab without first obtaining a court ruling, said the minister for higher education and minister of state for scientific research, Hani Helal. On the sidelines of celebrations marking the start of the Egyptian-French Year for Science and Technology, Helal said that a Supreme Administrative Court ruling allowing a student to wear the niqab will not be applied to other students.
Helal said that students are required to abide by the rules of the universities they attend. "I’m not going to wait for some disaster to happen in a university dormitory or during exams, especially given that the percentage of niqab-wearers increases during the exam period because [the niqab] helps with cheating," he added.
"We haven’t prevented niqab-wearers from taking their exams. All we asked for is that they expose their faces to their supervisor, so it’s harder to use Bluetooth to cheat," said the minister.
Meanwhile, Helal denied that National Cancer Institute patients have been refused admission to other hospitals until restoration work on the cancer institute’s southern building has been concluded.
At a meeting organized by the Science and Technology Fund, Helal said that patients are being admitted to Cairo University Student Hospital and Qasr el-Ainy Internal Diseases Hospital, which is close to the cancer institute.
"Treatment of children is still ongoing in the northern building, and so are chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatments. The institute hasn’t suspended previously scheduled operations," said Helal.
Translated from the Arabic Edition.