CAIRO: In the final hours of his tenure as interim president, Adly Mansour has issued a number of decisions affecting Egypt’s parliament, penal code, and religious discourse.
Mansour issued both the Parliamentary Elections Law and the Exercise of Political Rights law June 5; the new amendments included a decrease in the number of parliament seats to 567 from 603, and regulations to the parliamentarian’s salary in accordance with the maximum wage and taxes.
Mansour also ratified the amendments added to the penal code regarding indecent assaults crimes. According to the amendments, “Any person who sexually harasses a man or a woman in any form will be jailed for at least six months and fined 3,000EGP to 5,000 EGP [$420 to $700,] or may receive one of the two penalties.”
A number of human rights organizations and feminist groups welcomed the new amendments which toughened the punishment, demanded an independent law defining “crimes of sexual violence” instead of “indecent assaults.”
A law issued on Thursday bans non-appointed preachers at the Ministry of Religious Endowment or non-graduates of Al-Azhar Institute from delivering sermons or giving lessons at mosques.
Those who will deliver a sermon without a permit will face up to one year in jail and pay a fine ranging from 20,000 to 50,000 EGP.
According to another decree on the same day, insulting Egypt’s flag is punishable by up to a year in prison and 30,000 EGP.
A 5 percent tax will be added on wealthy individuals with incomes excess one million, as well as on companies with profits exceeds the same value EGP. The decree issued says that the additional tax will be imposed only for three years.
Mansour was sworn in as interim president one day after the ouster of former president Mohamed Morsi and announcement of the road map, which set a timeline for a new constitution as well as presidential and parliamentary elections.
President-elect Abdel Fatah al-Sisi is scheduled to be sworn in on Sunday, after it was announced he received over 96 percent of the votes.
Additional reporting by Hanan Fayed and Randa el-Banna