Law No. 94 of 2003
Promulgating The National Council for Human Rights
In the name of the people,
The President of the Republic
The People's Assembly has passed the following law,
And it is hereby promulgated:
A council named "The National Council for Human Rights", under the auspices of the Shoura Council, shall hereby be established to further the protection, set the values, raise the awareness, and ensure the observance of human rights.
The Council shall have a legal personality, have its headquarters in Cairo, and may have branches and offices in other Governorates of the Arab republic of Egypt.
The Council shall independently perform its duties, activities and functions.
The Council shall be composed of a Chairman, one Deputy Chairman, and 25 public figures well known for their experience and interest in human rights' issues, or for their distinguished performance in this field.
The Deputy Chairman shall substitute for the Chairman in the latter's absence.
A decree of the Shoura Council shall establish the Council for three years.
To achieve its goals, the Council shall:
1. Prepare and propose the means of implementation for a national action plan designed to further the protection of human rights in the Arab republic of Egypt.
2. Provide competent bodies with recommendations and advice on all means to protect further and promote human rights.
3. Provide opinions, recommendations, and advice on matters referred to it by the competent authorities and bodies concerning the protection and promotion of human rights.
4. Receive and examine complaints concerning protection of human rights, refer, at its discretion, any such complaints to the competent bodies and follow-up with them, advise the parties concerned with the matter of the legal procedures to be followed and assist them in such regard, or settle such complaints with the relevant bodies.
5. Monitor the application of international human rights agreements and conventions, as well as provide the concerned authorities with the proposals, notes, and recommendations necessary for the proper application of such agreements and conventions.
6. Coordinate with international and local organizations and agencies concerned in human rights in matters that would help achieve the objectives of and promote the relationships of such organizations and agencies with the Council.
7. Participate with Egyptian delegations in forums and meetings of regional and international organizations that are concerned with the protection of human rights.
8. Assist by way of advice in preparing reports that the state undertakes to present regularly to human rights committees and organs in the application of international conventions, and respond to inquiries made by such committees and organizations.
9. Coordinate with public agencies concerned with human rights, and cooperate with the National Council for Women, the National Council for Children and Motherhood, and other interested councils and agencies.
10. Disseminate and raise public awareness on the culture of human rights through the assistance of institutions and organs related to education, culture, media and information.
11. Hold conferences, symposia, and seminars on subjects related to human rights issues or related matters.
12. Make the recommendations necessary to support institutional and technical capacities in the fields of human rights, including the technical education and training of employees of the state bodies related to civil liberties, and economic, social, and cultural rights, with a view to increase the efficiency of such employees.
13. Issue bulletins, magazines, and printed material concerning the council, along with its objectives and functions.
14. Issue reports on human rights conditions, and developments made by the Arab Republic of Egypt in such regard at governmental and community levels.
State agencies shall assist the Council in discharging its duties and shall facilitate performance by the Council of its functions. State agencies shall provide the Council with the data or information required by the Council and related to such functions.
The Council may invite any representative of such agencies to participate in its work and meetings. Such representatives shall not be entitled to vote.
The Council shall employ sufficient numbers of competent employees in addition to experts and professionals, as necessary to perform its duties and functions.
The Council shall convene at the invitation of its Chairman at least once a month, and whenever the need so arises. The Council shall issue such invitation if so requested by one-third of its members.
The meeting shall be valid if attended by two-thirds of its members. Resolutions shall be adopted by a majority of the votes of the members present at the meeting. In the event of a tie, the party comprising the Chairman shall prevail.
The Chairman of the Council may invite to council meeting those whose opinion or experience the Chairman deems appropriate to seek concerning a matter brought forward for review or discussions. Any such person shall not be entitled to vote.
The President of the Republic may refer whatever issues the President deems appropriate to the Council and which relate to the functions of the Council for review by opinion of the Council. The President of the Republic may convene the Council if he deems so necessary.
To perform the functions of the Council, permanent committees shall be formed from among the members of the Council as follows:
1. Civil and Political Rights Committee
2. Social Rights Committee
3. Economic Rights Committee
4. Cultural Rights Committee
5. Legislative Affairs Committee
6. International Relations Committee
The Council may set up other permanent committees from among its members by a resolution adopted by a majority of two-thirds of its members.
The Secretariat of each committee shall be headed by one member of the Council's members. When reviewing any of the issues entrusted to it, a committee may seek the assistance of any person whose experience deems appropriate. This person shall not be entitled to vote.
The Council shall have a Secretary-General who shall be in charge of the implementation of the resolutions adopted by the Council, of the general supervision of the technical secretariat and personal affairs, and the financial and administrative affairs of the Council. The aforesaid shall be pursuant to the regulations of the Council.
A decision by the Council shall appoint the secretary general from among the members of the Council or otherwise. The Secretary-General shall be appointed for a term that is equal to the term of the Council. If the Secretary-General is a person other than a Councilmember, he may attend its meetings without having a right to vote.
The Chairman of the Council shall represent the council before the judiciary and third parties.
The Council shall have a separate budget that includes its income and expenses. The fiscal year of the Council shall commence and end with the commencement and closure of the fiscal year of the state, respectively.
The Council's resources shall consist of:
1. Funds allocated in the general budget of the state to the Council.
2. Grants, donations, and allowances that the Council accepts by a majority vote of at least two-thirds of its members.
3. State allocations including grants and allowances that are directed to human rights fields and pursuant to international agreements concluded with the Arab Republic of Egypt.
A special account shall be opened for the proceeds of such resources at a bank that is under the control of the Central Bank of Egypt. The surplus in such an account shall be carried forward at the end of each fiscal year to the budget of the Council for the subsequent year.
The Council shall prepare an annual report concerning its efforts and activities and shall incorporate therein recommendations the Council deems appropriate within its functions. The Council shall present such report to the President of the Republic, the head of the People's Assembly and the head of the Shoura Council.
The Council shall issue regulations to organize its work, and regulations to organize its technical secretariat and personnel, financial, and administrative affairs. In furtherance thereof, the Council shall not be bound by any governmental systems.
The Law shall be published in the Official Gazette and shall enter into force on the day following its publication.
The Law shall bear the Seal of the State, and shall be implemented as one of its laws.
Issued at the Presidency of the Arab Republic of Egypt on 19 June 2003
The law No.94 of 2003 has been amended by the law No.197 of 2017.
In the name of the People
The President of the Republic
Articles (1, 2, 3, 7, 9, 10, 11, 12, and 13) of the Law No. 94/2003on the establishment of the National Council for Human Rights shall be replaced by the following texts:
The National Council for Human Rights is an independent council which aims at promoting, developing and protecting human rights and public freedoms, in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution and international agreements, covenants and conventions ratified by Egypt. Italso aims at raising the awareness of human rights, inculcating their values, and ensuring their practice.The National Council for Human Rights shall be, herein, referred to as the “Council”.
The Council shall enjoya legal personalityanda technical, financial and administrative independence in the exercise of itsfunctions, activities and competences.
The Council headquartersshall be located in Cairo governorate or one of its neighboring governorates. It shall have the right to establish branches and offices in all governorates of the Republic.
The Council shall be composed of a President, a Vice-Presidentand twenty-five members to be selectedfromamongstpublicfiguresknown for their experience and interestin human rights issues or distinguishedbytheirvaluablecontributionsin the field of human rights, among whom a professor of constitutional law in an Egyptian university, and thusforatermof four years. None of the membersshall be appointed in the Council for more than two consecutive terms.
Without prejudice tothe provisions of applicable laws, the Council, in order to achieve its objectives, shallhave the following competences:
1- Provide its opinionondraft laws and bylaws relating to the Council and the
Scope of its competence.
2- Examine any allegations of human rights violations and submit proposals and
recommendations regarding all such issues to the State competent authorities.
3-Preparea national action plan for the promotionand protection of human rights
in Egypt and propose methods for carrying out such a plan.
4. Submit proposals and recommendations to the competent authorities in all
matters aiming at better protecting and promotinghuman rights .
5- Expressnecessaryopinion, proposals and recommendations, on allmatters
relevant to the protection and promotion of human rightssubmittedor referred
to the Council from competent authorities and bodies.
6-Receive, examinecomplaints in the field of human rights, refer those the Council
is of the view it deems necessary to refer themto the competentauthorities and
follow them up or counsel the concerned persons of the legalprocedures due to
be followed and assist themin undertaking these proceduresor settling and
resolving complaints with the competentauthorities.
7- Follow-up the implementation of the international human rights treaties,
covenants and conventions ratified by Egypt and submit necessary proposals,
observations and recommendations in this regard to the competent authorities.
8- Cooperate with international human rights organizations and bodies to
Contribute in fulfilling the objectives of the Council and promotingits relations
With them, in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
9-Provide its opinion in the preparation of reports the State is committed to
submit periodically to the human rights committees and bodies, in
implementation of international conventions and respond to the relevant
queries of such bodies in this regard.
10-Coordinate with the human rights State'sauthoritiesand cooperate in this
field with the National Council for Women, the NationalCouncil for
Childhood and Motherhood, the National Council for Persons with Disability and other concerned national councils and bodies.
11-Disseminate and raise awarenessof human rights culture amongst the public
with the assistance of competent institutions and agencies in charge of
education, upbringing, information and culture affairs and assist in preparing
human rights education programs.
12-Hold conferences, seminars and panel discussions on issues relevant to human
rights or relating events.
13-Provide necessary proposals to enhance structural and technical capacities in
the fields of human rights, including the technical preparation and training in
order to enhance the capacitiesofthe employees inState institutions relating to
public freedoms and economic, social and cultural rights.
14-Issue bulletins, magazines and publications relating to human rights and the
objectives and competence of the Council, accordingto the relevantlaws.
15- Issue reports on the situation and development of human rights.
16-Visit prisons and all places of detention, and treatment and correctional
facilities and listen to prisoners and inmates of such placesand facilities to
ascertain their proper treatment and the extent of their enjoyment of their
rights. The Council shall develop a report on eachvisit, including significant
observations and recommendations in orderto improve the conditions of
prisoners and inmates of theaforementioned places and facilities. The Council
shall submit such report to both the Public Prosecutor and the House of
17-File a complaint to the Public Prosecution of any violation of personal
freedoms or of the inviolability of the private life of citizens and other public
rights and freedoms provided by Constitution, the law, international
agreements, covenants and conventions ratified by Egypt, and thusonthe
basis of serious information availed to the Councilregarding the occurrence
of such violation or regardingtheidentity of the perpetratorand to inform
the competent authorities as well. The Council may interveneinthe civil
action in support of the plaintiffandupon itsbehest, in accordance with the
provisions of relevant laws.
The President of the Republic, the Speaker of the House of Representativesand the Prime Minister may refer to the Council, for consideration and providing its opinion, any issuerelevant to the Council competence.
The Council shall appoint a Secretary-General to be selected from amongstits non-members.The Council shall issue a resolution of his appointment fora term equal to the term of the Council. The Secretary-General shall have a full time job. He shall be in charge ofthe implementation of the Council'sresolutionsandthegeneral of supervision of the technical secretariat and the personnel, financial and administrative affairs, pursuant to the Council bylaws. He shall attend the sessions of the Council without having the rightof voting.
The President of the Council shall represent the Council before the judiciary and otherparties. The Vice-President shall replacethe President of the Council in case of indisposition or absence. The post of both of them is a full time job. The President of the Council may delegate the Vice-President in undertaking some of his functions.
The Council shall have an independent budget, developed in line with the general budget of the State, comprising the Council's revenues and expenditures in detail. The fiscal year of the Council shall concur with the beginning and the end of the State's fiscal year. The budget shall be audited by the Accountability State Authority.
The resources of the Council shall be composed of the following:
1- Allocationsassigned to the Council's in the State's general budget.
2- Grants, donations and subsidies approved by the majority of the members of the Council, in accordance with the laws and governing regulations. In the case they are allocated by a foreign body, the approval of the majority of the members of the House of Representatives is required to accept them unless they do not entail mutual obligations or they are allocated in a form of an international agreement,in such case their acceptance require an approval of the House of Representatives.
3- Grants and subsidies allocated to the Council by the State that are assigned, in international agreements concluded with the State, to the fields of human rights.
A special account shall be openedfor these resources in one of the banks that are subject to the Central Bank of Egypt auditing. The balance of this account will be directed at the end of every fiscal year to the Council's budget of the following fiscal year with the exception of the resources allocated to the Council from the State's budget.
The Council shall draw up an annual report on the situation of human rights. The annual report shall include the efforts and activities of the Council and relevant recommendations. The report shall be submitted to the President of the Republic, the House of Representatives and the Council of Ministers.
New articlesshall be added to Law No. 94/2003, namely; Article Two bis, Article Two bis “a”, Article Two bis “b”, Article Two bis “c”, Article Two bis “d” and Article Ten bis, as follows:
(Article Two bis)
The following requirements shall be fulfilled by the President of the Council, the Vice-President and the members:
1-To be Egyptian and enjoys full political and civil rights.
2-To have completed the military service or exempted there from by thelaw.
3-Not being subject to a final judgement in a felony or a crime against honour or
a breach of trust unless all charges were dismissed ora disciplinary action
conducive to the dismissal from employment unless such penalty wasannulled.
4-Not being member in either the executive or the legislative or the judicial bodies or authorities.
(Article Two bis “a”)
The House of Representatives shall undertake the procedures for the composition of the Council, at least, sixty (60) days before the elapse of the term thereof and thus in view of the candidacies presented by the national councils, the Supreme Council of Universities, the Supreme Council of Culture, professional syndicates and other bodies.
The General Committeeof the House of Representatives shall select to the House of Representativesthe candidates for the Council membership, taking into consideration the adequate representation of all forces of the society. The House of Representatives, with the approval of the majority of its members, shall select the President, the Vice-President and the members of the Council.
The President of the Republic shall issue a decree regarding the compositionof the Council. Itshall be published in the Official Gazette.
(Article Two bis “b”)
The President, the Vice-Presidentand the members of the Council shall discharge the functions of their duties within a framework of neutrality, transparency and independence while guarding the confidentiality of the information and data presented to them in such capacity and not utilising them for purposes other than those they have been presented for orany other purpose apart of achieving the objectives of the Council.
The President, the Vice-President and the members of the Council shall disclose any case involving present or future material or moral interest for same or any of their relatives till the relativesof the fourth degree thereof that undermines the prerequisites of integrity, neutrality and independence necessary for discharging the responsibilities of the duties thereof. The Council shall take the necessary procedure to eliminate such conflict of interest.
(Article Two bis “c”)
The President, the Vice-President, the members and the Secretary General of the Council shall submit at the end of each year and at the end of the term of the Council, thefinancial disclosure to the House of Representatives.
In case that any of them receive any in-kind or cash gifts by virtue of or because of working in the Council, such official shall disclose receiving such gift in a written letter submitted to and overviewed by the Council specifying the individual or the organisation who presented such a gift. The ownership of such gift shall be transferred to the Council in case its value exceeds three thousand Egyptian Pounds,.
(Article Two bis “d”)
The membership of the President, the Vice-President or any other member shall end in the following cases:
1- The death.
2- Losing any of the requirements for membershipspecified by the law. In case of receiving a final judgement in a felony, or a crime against honour or a breach of trust, the membership shall be terminated as of the date of enforcement of such final judgement,as well as in the case of receiving a final disciplinary judgement to the effect of the termination of employment.
3- Resignation submitted to the Council, provided that the resignation is in writing and stating the reasonsof resigning.
The membership may not be revoked for any other reasons than the aforementioned ones save upon the approval of the majority of the members of the House of Representatives.
In all cases, the President of the Republic shall issue a decision terminating or declaring the elapse of the membership. The decision shall be published in the Official Gazette.
A member shall be appointed, in accordance with Article II bis (a) of the law thereof, to succeed and complete the term of the member whose membership has expired.
The competent investigating authority shall notify the National Council for Human Rights and the Bureau of the House of Representatives upon arresting a member of the Councilor putting him in preventive detention and provide a comprehensive memo on the whole incident.
The members of the National Council for Human Rights, according to the most recent compositionthereof, shall manage the Council as of the date of the enforcement of the law there of, until the composition of the new Council.
The House of Representatives shall undertake the process of the composition of the new council, in accordance with the provisions of the two articles (Two bis and (Two bis “a”) of theLaw no. 94 of 2003 specified therein, within thirty days as of the enforcement of the provisions of the law thereof or as of the date of holding the first session of the House of Representatives in case same is not in session. One third of the members shall be replaced at the end ofthe first term of the new Council.
The present law shall be published in the Official Gazette and shall come into effect on the next day of its publication. The present law shall be stamped by the seal of the State and shall be implemented as one of the laws of the State.
Issued at the Presidency of the Republic on 9th of Dhul-Qidah 1438 A.H.
1st of August 2017 A.D.
Abdul Fattah el Sissi