Statement by his Excellency President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi Addressing the Meeting of Presidents of African Constitutional Courts, Supreme Courts and Constitutional Councils
Sunday، 21 February 2021 - 12:59 PM
Ladies and Gentlemen,
It’s a great pleasure to meet you today; being the finest legal minds in Africa, at a time when preparations are underway to receive you again soon in Cairo; the tradition that we have established over the past five years to bring together the highest judicial bodies in Africa under one umbrella in Cairo. Your meeting today comes under extraordinary circumstances that pervaded the world. Africa, like the rest of the world, is facing many difficulties in dealing with the repercussions of the Corona pandemic.
Thereupon, the status quo makes it inevitable upon us to collectively think and consider, from a legal and constitutional perspective, on how to deal with the challenges arising from the pandemic, in addition to the other traditional challenges, chief among them is cooperation to combat terrorism which impedes the process of development and stability, thus calls for your contribution through the mechanisms of constitutional law to eliminate this imminent danger in all possible ways, especially in the context of our endeavor to make Africa a great, harmonious and united continent. I have no doubt that we all hope that these efforts will result in great benefits for all African peoples, and for the future generations of young men and women in our ancient continent.
The most important challenges arising from the Corona pandemic are the accelerating and unprecedented orientation towards digital transformation in our societies, in addition to the process of reforming and rehabilitating the health care systems, not to mention the transition process towards a green economy. Dealing with these variables requires deep thinking and consideration in order to insure the existence of a modern constitutional infrastructure that is capable of dealing with the challenges arising from them; including the organization of digital transactions and interaction for individuals and private entities. This includes controlling the legal framework regulating dealing with many issues, the most important of which are information security, legal governance of social media and their content that greatly affects home and abroad, and the legal frameworks entrusted with regulating the work of electronic platforms, in addition to the legal frameworks related to dealing with huge databases and the personal information of our citizens.
Through the past few years, Egypt had taken proactive steps towards providing the infrastructure necessary for digitalization of governmental services. This has been positively reflected on the quality and the speed of delivery of such services in various fields. This has been accomplished within a comprehensive vision towards achieving complete digitalization of the work system and governmental services, as well as encouraging the private sector to do the same. The importance of such steps has been underlined with the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.
On another side, development and rehabilitation of the health care systems is also one of those most important challenges where there are many ethical and legal dilemmas that are quite compelling on this operation in various aspects. For example, the right to receive health services including the necessary medicine and vaccines, pricing and distribution operations, and the legal rules governing licensing, experimenting and producing of medicines and vaccines in the light of the unforeseen coercive circumstances where the pandemic outbreaks. All these circumstances necessitate the presence of firm and clear constitutional and legal rules that contribute to organizing the rules and procedures adopted in facing the challenges imposed by such exceptional circumstances.
Egypt has had an inclusive and systematic vision towards promoting the health care system and elevating the quality of its delivered services as one of the pillars and goals of sustainable development. The state organs concerned have worked on adapting means of digitalization of medical and treatment services to be upgraded in accordance with the highest international standards. This can be done through developing the institutional and technological system of the health care establishments and making use of it in implementing national health projects. On top of such projects is the comprehensive health insurance project that aims at providing health services to all members of the Egyptian family.
Moreover, the process of transition towards a green economy also represents a great challenge for the African continent countries. These countries will have to face this transformation, which will quickly reflect on the international trade system in a way that will negatively affect those countries that do not take practical measures to achieve this transformation and the legal consequences that will result upon this.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Our country’s constitutions have legal documents that guide and reflect all legislative and legal efforts, economic and political activities in dealing with the aforementioned challenges. It should also be subject to review and update, to provide the best possible direction and guidance for our peoples and societies through dealing with a world whose features are developing in a rapidly changing economic, social, political and legal environment.
Accordingly; Today, I invite you, as the best of the African legal minds, to discuss these challenges when you visit Egypt next June, and to consult with international experts and all relevant international bodies with technical competence in these issues, in addition to work collectively towards developing joint African constitutional rules to deal with these challenges, in support of our common vision towards building a unified, harmonious and prosperous future for Africa.
In this context, I also invite you to take advantage of the African judicial digital platform, which was launched in Cairo, in accordance with what you agreed upon in your previous meetings, to communicate and discuss these important issues for the benefit of Africa and the future of its people.
I would like to end my speech by expressing my wishes that your preparatory meeting today will succeed. I am looking forward to seeing you all in Egypt soon in our high level fifth meeting.
Thank you for listening
Long Live Egypt, Long Live Africa
May the Peace and Blessings of Allah by Upon You