Institutional Reform: Judiciary in Egypt- theoretical foundations and challenges

Algeria ,Egypt ,Iraq ,Jordan ,Lebanon ,Morocco ,Tunisia ,Yemen

By Youssef Ouf 1

This paper is a case study in the book titled Institutional reform in the Arab region (Media, Judiciary, and religious), which is published by AFA in 2016.
The paper refers to the Theoretical foundations of the historical attempts to reform Egyptian Judiciary system, and protracted challenges.
Ouf tackling the constitutional and law context of the judiciary system in Egypt by referring to the independence of the judiciary as an essential insurance for the check and balance of authorities.
The paper presents the divisions of the judicial authority in Egypt, namely the ordinary, administrative and constitutional courts, and the public prosecution in addition to the military judiciary.
The general constitutional organization of the judiciary in Egypt includes several principles, the most important of which are the independence of the judiciary, the right to a fair trial before the natural judge, the right to litigation and the right of defense, as well as the mechanisms for implementing sentences. However, the paper points out that, Appointment of the Attorney-General in addition to the subordination of the Judicial Inspection Authority to the Ministry of Justice and not to the Supreme Judicial Council.
The paper traces the points of intervention and the challenges and constitutional developments associated with it such as the number of judges of the Supreme Constitutional Court in 11 of the 2012 constitution, although it came in the context of indirect intervention, was considered a positive development that was quickly reversed in the 2014 Constitution. The attempts to intervene in the judiciary to seek to strengthen the independence of amounts in the constitutional texts of each judicial body, such as the inclusion of its budget as one bulk in the state budget.
It also traced the evolution of the independence of the military judiciary from being a department of the Ministry of Defense to its conversion to a constitutional independent judiciary. However, amendments to the Military Justice Act after 2014 submitted to a Ministry of Defense subsidiary and the jurisdiction of the military judiciary expanded.
The paper included recommendations for some legislative amendments to the laws of the judiciary in line with the provisions of the 2014 Constitution. It refers to the need to establish a judicial academy to administer the appointment and training of judges, the need to limit the authority of the Ministry of Justice for judicial inspection and discipline, judicial authority shall be subject to the supervision of the judiciary.
Full version available in Arabic:

1 Judge and constitutional adviser to the United Nations, and a researcher at the Middle East Center of the Atlantic Council at the USA

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