Egypt to amend controversial NGO law

Egypt plans to amend a controversial law passed last year that places tight controls on non-governmental organisations, the prime minister's office said on Wednesday.

Ratified in May 2017 by President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, the law has sparked fears of an intensified crackdown on civil society.

Since Sisi took power in 2014, rights groups have regularly accused his government of human rights violations and over the repression of dissidents.

Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli's office said a ministerial committee would be formed to help "achieve the aspirations of civil society".

The move comes after Sisi addressed the law in a speech at a youth forum in Sharm el-Sheikh.

"We... want the law to be balanced and to do what is expected of it to organise the work of NGOs in the right way," Sisi told attendees.

The law provides Egypt's intelligence and security services with strict controls over the activities of non-governmental organisations, especially groups that receive foreign funding.

Those that violate the law could receive up to five years in jail and fines of more than $55 000.

The law has been the target of strong criticism from the United Nations and international watchdogs, including Human Rights Watch.

* Sign up to News24's top Africa news in your inbox: SUBSCRIBE TO THE HELLO AFRICA NEWSLETTER

FOLLOW News24 Africa on Twitter and Facebook

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24
Voting Booth
Are you going to keep wearing a mask following the announcement that it is no longer required under law?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
No ways, I'm done
5% - 6221 votes
Yes, I still want to be cautious
90% - 107562 votes
Only certain circumstances
5% - 5541 votes
Vote
Rand - Dollar
16.50
-1.3%
Rand - Pound
19.96
-1.0%
Rand - Euro
17.21
-1.0%
Rand - Aus dollar
11.24
-1.0%
Rand - Yen
0.12
-1.0%
Gold
1,810.71
0.0%
Silver
19.89
0.0%
Palladium
1,964.46
0.0%
Platinum
892.00
0.0%
Brent Crude
111.63
+2.3%
Top 40
59,640
-0.8%
All Share
65,662
-0.9%
Resource 10
61,245
-4.1%
Industrial 25
80,264
+1.1%
Financial 15
14,564
-0.8%
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Editorial feedback and complaints

Contact the public editor with feedback for our journalists, complaints, queries or suggestions about articles on News24.

LEARN MORE