The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information
Freedom of expression of workers and social movements Program
Protests have raised both labor and social during in February, as the program on freedom of expression of workers and social movements had anticipated. And the pace has increased after workers were paid January salaries, without the increases promised by the government, employers or collective bargaining agreements signed since years (as in cases of La Beaute Ceramics).
The program monitored (61 protests) during the month… Among them (27 labor and professional protest) and 34 (social protest), summarized as follows:
First: Labor and professional protests:
- The strikes came in first (nine strikes)
- The Protests were 6 (six stops)
- Vigil Threats (seven times)
- The sits-in (three sit-ins)
- Hunger strikes (2 cases)
They are detailed as follows:
- Workers of “La Beaute” Ceramics, of the princes group:
Workers of “La Beaute” Ceramics, a subsidiary of the group of princes of ceramics in the city of 10th of Ramadan, entered a strike at the company’s factory on February 3rd to claim their arrears and the annual increase.
The protesting workers announced a list of 10 demands to end their sit-in, and the administration refused to hear those demands and on February 9th sent workers letters to meet with them on Feb. 10th, without giving reasons.
On Friday February 16th, the security services arrested 6 of the striking workers on the basis of a decision by the Public Prosecution with accusations of “inciting their colleagues to strike”, and also decided to arrest and bring 20 other workers.
The head of one of the company’s divisions was injured by fractures in the feet, spine and pelvis, after jumping off the third floor, when he was being arrested from his home in the village of Hefna, in the center of Bilbis. He was taken to Al-Ahrar Hospital “He said.
The strike ended on February 21st, and the production movement returned to the factory without the release of the six detained workers and the waiver of the police records against the arrested 20 for inciting the strike, although the administration asked the workers to break the strike to waive the records against their colleagues.
- Teachers strike at Victoria College in Alexandria
Some of the teachers of the Victoria College in Alexandria organized a protest on February 4th, and the teachers of the primary department came to a standstill due to the delay in paying their financial dues.
The teachers of the American Department protested against the non-release of contracts with the school for the same year, in spite of the approval of the directorate general of the national institutes to sign off their contracts.
- The strike of the city tram drivers in Alexandria
On the evening of Sunday February 11th, a number of the Alexandria Tram drivers entered a general strike at the station in the center of the city because of the repeated attacks by taxi drivers (minivans), and a police record against the taxi driver was filed.
- The temporary labor strike at the Ferry facility in Port Foad:
On Monday morning February12th, temporary workers at the Ferry facility in Port Foad, organized a protest and a strike, against the delayed salaries for the month, and some officials of the facility in the presence of police negotiated with the temporary workers to end the strike and promised workers to pay their salaries within 48 hours.
- The strike of the security staff of Al-Masry club branch in Al-Dawahi district of Port Said:
The security staff of Al-Masry club branch in Al-Dawahi district of Port Said, after the club security director, had fired one of the workers when one of his colleagues informed the director of the bad things the worker has been saying about him.
The security staff demanded that the decision is cancelled, announced the strike, and called the police.
The president of the club communicated with the security staff and demanded that they stop the strike.
- Workers strike of the United Ready Made Garments Factory in Sadat Center:
Workers of the united garment factory of one of Sadat centers in Monufia announced on Wednesday February 21st, an open strike and stopped all production machines to put pressure on the administration to meet their demand for salary increase. The salaries of the workers did not exceed 1200 pounds.
- Dozens of workers Dr. Geriche “:
Dozens of workers at the company of Dr. Geriche for the production of glass, in the city of 10th of Ramadan, entered a strike on January 30th against low wages.
The strike lasted for two days and was settled by negotiation between the workers and the company through legitimate means, and in coordination with the 10th district Workers’ Union, .
- Workers strike of the Arab Company for Medicines and Medical Plants Mepaco:
Workers of the Arab Medicines and Medical Plants Company (Mepaco) entered a strike on January 31st, 2018.
The strike lasted for 4 days in protest against the low wages and ill treatment of the administration, and ended after the intervention of the Ministry of Manpower and the agreement to return to work on February 8th with a promise to send an official letter from the ministry to determine the series of negotiations in the ministry, and the management of the company to stop all decisions taken against workers and resort to dialogue and the negotiating table.
- Artex Apparel factory workers strike:
On Monday February 19th, 2018, the workers of Artex Apparel ended their strike. A committee was set up to solve the problems of the employees of the company, including; not to deduct the regularity incentive in the event of the employee’s annual leave, or in the case of the worker going to health insurance, and to raise the incentive from L.E. 150 to L.E. 200.
- Protests and Vigils:
- A protest by a number of young men and women appointed to the Administrative Prosecution Authority:
On February 12th, a number of young men and women appointed to the Administrative Prosecution Authority, by decision No. 260 of 2017, organized a protest in front of the headquarters of the Administrative Prosecution in the city of October 6th, in protest against the suspension of the appointment decision and the non-delivery of their posts since the decision was issued in June 2017. Security was present, and surrounded the protesters.
- A protest by the employees of “Montazah for tourism and investment” in Alexandria:
Employees of the state-owned Montazah Company for Tourism and Investment in Alexandria have succeeded in meeting their demands for the payment of periodic and social arrears. Both the Ministries of Tourism and the Labor Force and the representatives of the workers in their collective agreement confirmed the eligibility of 780 workers for their legitimate demands
- The staff of Mussaab Ben Omair school in Minia:
On Sunday February 18th, workers at Mussaab Ben Omair School in Minia organized a protest inside the school, protesting the delay of their salaries o and the appointment of a board of directors that would be reluctant to pay the employees their salaries, dismiss a number of them and appoint others to the school.
- Protest by the workers in Port Said Port:
On Tuesday February 20th, Port Said Port workers organized a protest rally to protest against the non-payment of financial benefits from the profits and end of service benefits and to facilitate the procedures of the medical system after the end of contracting with the service provider.
- The female and male workers of the school nutrition project Abu Sultan
Workers of the school nutrition project of the Ministry of Agriculture, Abu Sultan, organized on February 1st, a protest in front of the governorate building to demand their late salaries for December and January for more than 450 male and female workers.
- Dozens of university security workers at Fayoum University
On Wednesday February 21st, dozens of university security workers at Fayoum University organized a protest outside the office of the university president to demand the installation.
- Threatening to Protest:
- Threat of a protest by a number of employees of the Railways Authority:
A number of employees of the Railways Authority announced on Feb 3rd the organization of a protest on Monday February 4th in front of the Authority’s headquarters in the Ramses area.
- Threat of a protest by the workers in the Union of Egyptian Workers:
Workers of the Egyptian Workers’ Union announced on Feb 3rd that a press conference followed by a protest would be held on Sunday February 4th in solidarity with their 4 colleagues, who had been terminated a few days back by the board.
- Threat by a number of veterinarians working in temporary contracts in several governorates:
A number of veterinarians working on temporary contracts in several governorates on February 17th threatened to organize a protest to be followed by a partial strike until their demand for unexplained unpaid month’s salaries, which was something that had been repeated before.
- Threats by the General Union of Doctors for Northern Upper Egypt and the physicians of the Health Insurance Hospital:
The General Syndicate of Doctors for Northern Upper Egypt cancelled a protest organized by the members of the Syndicate and the doctors of the Health Insurance Hospital and was supposed to be on Thursday February 15th, to protest against by Dr. Ali Hijazi, the Chairman of the Board, to exclude their colleague Dr. Mohammed Yehia from the position of director of the hospital, because he had attended the meeting of the directors of the hospitals of the Commission at Mokattam Hospital in Cairo, wearing casual clothes. The cancellation of the protest vigil came after promises from the leaders of the Health Insurance Authority and the General Union of Physicians to solve the problem peacefully.
- Threat of a number of workers in the school nutrition and forestation projects in Fayoum governorate
A large number of workers in the school nutrition and forestry projects in Fayoum governorate on February 17th threatened to carry out a number of peaceful protests inside the agricultural administration in Ibsheway in Fayoum Governorate, and to close all gates until their legitimate demands were met. Those demands were the payment of the due salaries, and installation.
- Threats by workers in the Egyptian contracting company “Mokhtar Ibrahim“
Employees of the Egyptian contracting company “Mokhtar Ibrahim”, from employees, engineers and heads of sectors, threatened to enter a complete work, to demand the resignation of the current company’s board of directors, after the company suffered heavy losses.
- Threat by the Front for the Defense of Abbassia Hospital for Mental Health:
The Nasr City police station, informed the front to defend the Abbassia Mental Health Hospital, refusing their request to set up a vigil, which was scheduled for Monday February 12th, half an hour before it was supposed to occur.
The Front had announced the organization of that vigil to clarify the real situation of work inside the hospital, and the real efforts there, after the spread of pictures of patients inside the hospital who had been treated inappropriately.
- The sit-in of administrative security at Benha University
Eight retired members of the Administrative Security Administration at Benha University held a meeting in the office of the President of the University on Monday February 5th against the backdrop of the university’s decision No. 224 of 2018 to let go their services for not completing their papers.
- The sit-in of the committees of food safety and follow-up field in the General Union of Veterinarians
Sherine Zaki, head of the Committees food safety and follow-up field in the General Union of veterinarians, and a first degree inspection doctor at the Directorate of Veterinary Medicine in Giza, announced on February 11thher sit-in inside the union of veterinarians after terminating her as a doctor of veterinary, without any move from the investigation bodies and while the head of the syndicate of veterinaries ignoring her.
- The sit-in workers of Jest Metals Company in 10th of Ramadan
The workers demanded the intervention of the Directorate of Manpower in Sharqia to discuss their demands and reach a solution that satisfied the two sides of the production process, “the workers – the employers” to operate the factory at full capacity and productivity, after making limited protests to demand increases in salaries.
- Hunger strikes:
- A strike in the educational tools section of Jamal Abdel Nasser School:
An administrative employee, Umm Hashim Ahmed, who worked at the administrative department of teaching aids in Jamal Abdel Nasser school in Qahafa, Fayoum entered a hunger strike on Saturday February 10th morning, inside the Health Insurance Hospital in Fayoum due to the rejection of her transfer request to the Director General of the Department.
- The strike of the director of Tarbia Fekriya school in Qena:
Taqadom Ahmed, Director of Tarbia Fekriya school in Qena on Friday Febr 23rd entered a hunger strike, inside the public Qena Hospital, to protest the transfer from Aswan to serve as Director of Tarbia Fekriya school in Qena despite being a resident of Edfu, Aswan.
Second: Social protests:
- The first position was for the vigils with 13 ones
- Second Strike with 5 strikes
- Third sit-in by 4 sit-ins
- Fourth threat of protests and vigils number 4
- In fifth place were suicide for economic reasons, rallies, demonstrations and marches by two cases for each.
Detailed as follows:
A – Vigils:
- A protest for the parents of Amoun Private School:
On Sunday Feb 4th, a number of parents of students of Amoun Private School of the Helmeyat Al Zaytoon Educational Administration organized a protest against the pressures exerted by the school to increase expenses in violation of the ministry’s decisions.
- A protest by those with reservations to the Association of Applied Housing Cooperative Project:
They organized on Saturday Feb10th, a protest in front of the Administrative Prosecution of Housing, in protest against the delay, demanding the prosecution of corruption, and issuing a distress call to state officials.
- Dozens of taxi drivers protest:
On Saturday Feb10th, dozens of taxi drivers in Desouq organized a protest in front of the city council of Desouq, Al-Ibrahimi Square and Al-Jaysh Street to demand the prevention of unlicensed “Tok Tok” the three-wheeled covered scooter, on the streets of the city, as they do not respect the traffic rules, while getting paid the same tariff as they do.
The security leaders held negotiations with the drivers to stop the situation and promised to resolve the crisis by referring to the mayor of the city.
- Students of the school of excellence in Tanta:
On Tuesday Feb 13th, 300 students from the schools of excellence in Tanta demonstrated in protest against the decision of the coordination system issued by the Ministry of Higher Education, which they described as “unfair” as they put it.
- Students of Tahrir Experimental School at Mohammad Ali Makarem Street, in Assiut:
A number of students of Tahrir Experimental School on Muhammad Ali Makarem Street, in downtown Assiut, organized a protest demanding the governor to quickly intervene to remove garbage from the school.
- Protest by students of the school of excellence in Luxor:
On Wednesday Feb 14th, students of the School of Excellence in Luxor organized a solidarity demonstration with students of the same school in Tanta against the coordination system and the lack of clarity of vision at an important stage such as coordination.
- A stand for dozens of street vendors and shop owners in Mansoura:
On Wednesday Feb 21st, dozens of street vendors and shopkeepers staged a protest at Port Said Street in Mansoura City, one of the largest commercial streets in the governorate of Daqahalia, against police mistreating them.
- A protest by the parents of the students of Maadi Educational Administration Schools:
The parents of the students of the Maadi Educational Administration organized a protest after addressing the security authorities because of the decrease in the results of the semi-annual exams.
- Dozens of parents of students of the National School of Girls:
On Sunday Feb 25th, dozens of parents of students of the National College of Girls in Alexandria staged a protest against the decision to increase the expenses of the school year in violation of the decision of the Minister of Education.
- A protest by dozens of Azhar secondary school students:
Dozens of Azhar secondary school students staged a protest in front of the Al-Azhar new senate on the morning of Feb 26th to demand the revocation of Resolution No. 84, which provides for the return of students who failed in secondary school in the subjects in which they failed but not all subjects.
- A protest by dozens of residents of the village of Bishbish, Mahalla:
On Feb 26th, dozens of residents of the village of Bishbish held a protest to demand that the Minister of Health and Population approve the completion of the demolition, reconstruction and operation of the central hospital in Bishbish in order to preserve the lives of the citizens.
- The Green Valley Occupants’ union, and hundreds of owners protesting by Oasis Road
The Green Valley occupants’ union and hundreds of the owners of the Green Valley lands, by Oasis Road, organized a protest rally in front of the Ministry of Housing on Feb 26th to complete the acquisition procedures.
- Dozens of internal microbus drivers in Tanta
On Monday Feb 26th, dozens of internal microbus drivers organized a demonstration in front of the General Directorate of Al Gharbia Governorate. The stand ended after a promise from the security authorities to discuss their demands.
- A strike by the students of the Ismailia school:
A number of students from the Ismailia School of Excellence organized a student strike to press on their demands, which included clarifying the system of coordination, providing experimental models for the URET exam, and defining the learning concepts of the examination system.
The students expressed dissatisfaction over what they called the mystery of their future and their lack of knowledge of their fate after the intransigence of the Ministry of Education
- A strike by female students of the Technical Secondary School for Industrial Education in Esna:
The female students of the vocational secondary school for industrial education in the center and city of Esna, south of Luxor, went out of school on Sunday Feb 4th, protesting the return of the headmaster after she was removed from her position for some time.
- A strike by students of the School of excellence of science and technology in Kafr El – Sheikh:
On Sunday Feb 11th, the Students of excellence, Science and Technology School in Kafr El-Sheikh organized a strike at the Ministry of Education and Technical Education to determine their position on coordination and examination system. The strike was adjourned on Sunday Feb18th, following their meeting with the Undersecretary of the Ministry of Education in Kafr al-Sheikh. The students’ demands were raised by the Minister of Education .
- The strike by the microbus drivers at Al-Galaa station in Tanta:
Workers of the main sea microbus drivers at Al-Galaa station in Tanta, on Feb 5th organized a protest against the presence of unauthorized microbus vehicles operating on the same line and loading passengers from inside the city. The strike ended after officials promised to resolve the crisis.
- The strike of taxi drivers on the line of the city of Naqada in Qena:
On Monday Feb 12th, taxi drivers on Nakada city line in Qena governorate staged a strike protesting the lack of internal and external roads pavement in Naqada, and the many industrial bumps.
C – Sit-in:
- A sit-in of students of the Higher Institute of Arts, Alexandria Unit:
Dozens of students of the Higher Institute of Theatric Arts gathered at the Alexandria Unit on Wednesday morning Feb 7th. They held a sit-in with banners reading several demands related to the details of the study and participating in festivals organized by the Academy of Arts.
- A sit-in by students of the School of Science and Technology of excellence in Alexandria:
On Feb 12th, students of the Alexandria School of Science and Technology entered a sit-in protesting against their coordination system, which reduced their enrollment in Summit Faculties
- A sit-in by students of the school of excellence in the city of Sars El-Liyan Monufia:
150 students attended the school of excellence in the city of Sars El-Liyan Monufia in a sit-in inside the school to demand an adjustment of their percentage in coordination, as well as the percentage of absenteeism and attendance.
- Sit-in by a member of the House of Representatives from the Department of Metobas , Kafr El Sheikh, Fathi al-Sharqawi:
A member of the House of Representatives from the Metobas in Kafr Al-Sheikh, Fathi Al-Sharqawi, took part in an open sit-in in the Pharaoh’s Hall of the House of Representatives on Monday Feb 26th, protesting the contamination of drinking water and the closure of three water stations in Kafr El-Sheikh.
(D) The threat of vigils
- Threats by the national volleyball team players to the special needs:
The national volleyball team called on the Paralympics to stand up on Thursday Feb 22nd before the Ministry of Sports to protest their poor reward after winning the African title and qualifying for the World Cup.
- Threat by residents of the residential compound “Madinaty” :
Residents of Madinaty staged a protest on Saturday Feb 24th to find a solution to the issue of dogs after an attack by guard dogs of one of the residents of the city to one of the security guards, leading to him losing an arm and a leg.
- Threats of the people of the city of Desouq:
The people of the city of Desouq in Kafr El-Sheikh governorate called for organizing a protest in Desouq Square because of the lack of response of officials for months to the citizen complaints about pollution of drinking water and mixing with sewage waste, as well as increase the proportion of ammonia from normal rates.
- Threats of the Bar Association Council in Suez:
In an emergency meeting on Sunday Feb 25th, the Suez Bar Association decided to organize a protest in the Suez Courts Complex on Tuesday Feb 27th against renewed police abuses with Suez lawyers.
(E) Suicide for economic reasons
- Suicide of worker “M”:
The worker “M.M.”, 30, committed suicide by hanging himself in his apartment in Saff, because of his financial difficulties.
- Suicide of the young man “A. Kh.”
A Young man “A. Kh., 27, has committed suicide by hanging himself from the wire of a laptop inside his house in Minia because of the accumulation of debts and the pursuit of creditors.
(F) Gatherings, demonstrations and marches
- Fishermen gathered in the area of Al-Max:
On Sunday Feb 11th, al-Ajami neighborhood residents postponed the demolition of fishermen’s homes in the Al-Max area, known as the “Venice of Alexandria”, after fishermen were surprised not to be handed over alternative “replacement pump” contracts.
- The people of 35 Egyptian fishermen gathered in Sudan:
On February 12th, 35 Egyptian fishermen gathered outside the house of the former head of the independent fishermen’s union in Al-Mataria city in Daqahalia to demand the return of their loved ones two weeks after their arrest by the Sudanese authorities in Port Sudan for fishing in the Sudanese territorial waters.
- A demonstration for dozens of students of the Faculty of Dar Al Uloom, Fayoum University:
On Sunday Feb 25th, dozens of students from the Faculty of Dar Al Uloom at Fayoum University organized a protest in front of the College, protesting what they described as “the intention of Dr. Saber Mashali, the former Dean of the College, to fail 50% of the students of the four academic classes.
- A demonstration for hundreds of solidarity and dignity pensioners south of Luxor:
Hundreds of solidarity and dignity pensioners demonstrated in the city of Esna, south of Luxor, on Sunday Feb 18th to protest against the suspension of the payment of pensions a few months back.
- A march for hundreds of residents of the village of Mastai, Qweisna:
On February 23rd, hundreds of people from the village of Mastai, Qweisna of Monufia governorate, marched around the village to demand the punishment of the murderer of the girl Rodina, who was killed by a 17-year-old man who tried to rape her on February 17th. The protesters also demanded deportation of the young man’s family from the whole village.
- The health administration II march in Mahalla Al Kobra:
The health administration II in Mahalla al-Kobra organized a march in front of the General Office of the center and city of Al-Mahalla Al-Kubra to support the national polio vaccination campaign.
Third: Geographical distribution of labor and professional protests:
The governorate of Sharqia topped the labor and professional protests during the month of February by 5 protests, followed by Cairo governorate with 4 protests, followed by Port Said, Fayoum and Alexandria in third place with 3 protests each, and fourth in Giza with two protests. In the fifth place came the governorates of Monufia, Ismailia, Qalioubia, Minia, Qena, Beni Suef, and other several governorates witnessed one protest during the month of February.
Fourth: Geographical distribution of social protests:
Cairo governorate topped the social protests by 6 social protests during February. Gharbia came second with 5 protests during the month. In third place came Alexandria and Kafr El Sheikh with 4 protests each. In fourth place was Luxor. Daqahalia and Monufia had two protests during the month, and in the sixth place came the governorates of Ismailia, Giza, Qalubia, Minia, Qena, Suez, Assiut, Fayoum, with one protest each.
Fifth: Sectors distribution of labor and professional protests:
The education sector and its problems led all sectors in the labor and professional protests in February with (5) protests, at the second place came the agriculture, transport sectors, at the third place came the health sector, textile and weaving, chemical industries, construction and building materials. The security sector, the sports sector, tourism, personnel, metallurgy and judiciary came with one protest each.
Sixth: Sectors Distribution of Social protests:
The education sector topped the scene of the social protests during February, where there were 13 social protests this month. The transport sector came second with 5 protests during the month, and the security sector, which witnessed 3 protests during the month, followed by health, water and sanitation, trade, services, sports, housing, pensions, construction and food industries.
The social protests also witnessed two cases of suicide for economic reasons that have not been classified in any of the research sectors.
Thus, from the previous presentation:
- The total number of protests has more than doubled this month compared with the previous month (30 in January and 61 in February).
- One of the striking phenomena during this month is the province of Sharqia for labor and professional protests with the decline of the status of Cairo, which kept it in the social protests.
- The education sector continued to issue protests and complaints from the educational process (students, teachers, and parents). Most of these were related to the increase in expenses, irregularities in regulations and examination systems, and the transfer of educational process holders.
- The intervention of security was clear to the employers to arrest the leaders of the workers and fabricate the charge of incitement, and the compromise between the dissolution of the protest and personal freedom.
From here, the alarm was to alert the community to the police and business tyranny of the workers’ stable rights with all the consequent threat to the productive process and the safety of the community.
The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information
Freedom of expression of workers and social movements