Egypt’s State Council called on Monday for an urgent meeting on Wednesday of its general assembly to discuss consequences of a bill amending the country’s judicial system.
A statement on Monday, following a meeting headed by judge Gabriel Abdel Malak, said the draft judicial authority law represented “a flagrant violation of Article 169 of the Constitution, which requires judicial authorities to be consulted before the introduction of laws regulating their function".
The bill reduces judges’ retirement age from 70 to 60. The statement said that this change has no clear justification and is at odds with Article 170 of the Constitution, which emphasizes judges’ independence and immunity against removal.
The statement said the proposed law will empty the judicial system of efficient and experienced workers, as well as undermining the fundamental rights enjoyed by judges.
Supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood, whose party, the Freedom and Justice Party, backs the bill, staged protests on Friday demanding the judicial system to be “purged.” The protests followed a court decision to release former President Hosni Mubarak pending retrial over protesters’ murder.
On Sunday, Justice Minister Ahmed Mekky submitted his resignation.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm