Geneva – February 6, 2024
In a significant development, the Committee for Justice (CFJ) has called for an immediate suspension of the verdict issued by the Matareya Misdemeanor Court against former presidential candidate Ahmed Tantawi and his campaign manager, Mohamed Abu Al-Diyar. The court sentenced Tantawi to a year in prison and imposed a bail of 20 thousand pounds, pending appeal. Additionally, 21 members of the Tantawi campaign were handed a one-year prison term with labor, while Tantawi himself faces a five-year ban from participating in parliamentary elections.
The case, known as the “People’s Powers of Attorneys Case,” revolves around allegations of incitement, agreement, and supplying electoral papers without proper authorization. The CFJ, however, asserts that the trial lacks fundamental fair trial standards, highlighting numerous violations, including Tantawi and Abu Al-Diyar being referred to trial without prior summons for investigation before the prosecution.
Notably, the CFJ emphasizes the broader context of the Egyptian presidential elections, citing widespread violations during the editing of powers of attorney for candidates. Supporters of Tantawi were allegedly obstructed from issuing powers of attorney, prompting the campaign to invite citizens to show support by filling out online forms and bypassing notary missions amid reported security intimidation.
Expressing concern over the perceived use of judicial tools for political purposes, the CFJ insists on suspending the verdict and appeals to Egyptian authorities to refrain from involving the judiciary in political battles. The committee argues that such manipulation jeopardizes the independence of the judiciary and undermines internationally recognized fair trial standards.
As the situation unfolds, the Committee for Justice’s demand underscores the delicate balance between judicial processes and political maneuvering, urging a thorough review of the case to ensure justice and maintain the integrity of the legal system.