Egypt’s facing a lot of changes recently with the new education system, new hospitals opening, roads getting renovated and more. It’s all happening rapidly, and Egypt is aiming step by step to better the quality of life in the country in multiple aspects. The new personal status law’s draft has caused a lot of uproar however, with people stating that it takes us several steps back again.
Nehad Abo El Komsan
A video is circulating of cassation attorney, Nehad Abo El Komsan. In the video she discusses the new personal status law that is suggested by the parliament in a new draft, in which the new rules focus primarily on Islamic law mainly.
Nehad asks the President of Egypt, Abdelfattah El Sisi, to interfere and gather a committee of experts from all aspects. These include economy experts, psychology experts, and religious experts to discuss all matters in relation to family law and personal status, as it is a law that has control over the entirety of society. Additionally, Nehad requests to do this along with studying laws concerning family laws within the Arab and Islamic countries of the Middle East.
She references how all Arab nations have crossed miles in relation to family laws and personal status. Nehad emphasized how Saudi Arabia is currently reevaluating their own personal status laws; to implement human rights and fair rules for women, men, and children. This includes a newly discussed law that a divorce should be supervised by a judge, to ensure all matters are fair and legal. Additionally, women of age in Morocco have total supervision over themselves.
The draft dictates that any matter without a reference from the Holy Quraan is to be referenced from the Hanafi doctrine. The attorney stated that this limits the variety of options given by the Holy Quraan, especially in light of the social changes and living in these modern times.
Why abide to one doctrine when we can follow the Quraan and Sunnah as God advised?– Nehad Abo El Komsan
How the new personal status law affects women
The main theme of the new personal status law’s draft revolves around women becoming minorities, possessing no legal control over any personal matters, and are under the care of their closest male relative.
In Egypt, there are women in powerful positions in the parliament, the ministries and respectable companies, meaning they can have such prestigious careers, have a say in their country’s affairs, but cannot sign their own marriage papers. However, if a woman does sign her own marriage paper, her brother or father can legally sign a paper, asking for the annulment of this marriage, This can be based on the grounds that their marriage is unmatched for any reason they find suitable.
The law’s draft also entails:
- The ability for a close male relatives to ban a woman from traveling by signing a petition. This case takes 24 hours, whilst custodial expenses cases can take up to a year.
- Women have no ownership over their own homes, as a man can easily kick her out of the house, with no legal consequences.
- Women have no guardianship over their kids. They can not register their children once they’re born, cannot submit their kids into school, or help them get an ID when they are of age. The law legally makes women incompetent of taking care of themselves or their kids.
Nehad Abo El Komsan continues to plead with President Sisi to interfere and stop the draft from being implemented, hoping to ensure the safety of our women and our society.