Two student activists at the German University in Cairo (GUC), Amr Abdel Wahhab and Hassan Osman Ziko, were summarily expelled by GUC authorities on 28 February. Three other students, Ahmed Mohamed Hassan, Mostafa Ahmed Eissa and Abdel Hamid Abou Zeid Abdel Hamid were suspended.
The GUC sent an email on 28 February 2012, to all academics informing them of the expulsion of the two students and suspension of three others. It stated that “following the complaints of many academic staff as well as the disciplinary council of the GUC regarding the inappropriate behavior of the students,” the executive University Council held a meeting and decided to expel two students; Amr Abdel Wahhab and Hassan Osman Ziko, and suspend three students for two weeks; Ahmed Mohamed Hassan, Mostafa Ahmed Eissa and Abdel Hamid Abou Zeid Abdel Hamid”. The e-mail justifies the decisions on the basis that a ‘final warning’ was sent to the activists warning that they would be expelled in case ‘they repeat the breach of public order in the university or participating in riots.’
Struggle for students’ rights
The authorities’ arbitrary actions follow months of campaigning by students at the German University in Cairo, such as Amr Abdel Wahhab, for the right to have their own democratic students’ union. The university authorities reacted to the students’ campaign with attempts to ban student union meetings on campus and the suspension of lectures and seminars (for more background information see ‘German University in Cairo locks-out students’, 15/11/2011, socialistworld.net).
Since the expulsions and suspensions on 28 February, some GUC students called for solidarity action with the expelled activists and for a boycotting of the university canteens. The ‘GUC Student Union 2012’ and students unions and political student societies from other universities in Egypt issued statements of support with the expelled students. An Egyptian MP, Mostafa Alnagar, protested the disciplinary measures.
Protests are taking place today, 1 March, at the GUC campus.
Socialistworld.net appeals to readers everywhere to send immediate protests to the GUC authorities, demanding that they repeal these arbitrary actions and allow students at GUC to freely organise their own independent union.
Send protest letters to the German University of Cairo authorities:
Dr. Laila Mahran, Vice President for Student Affairs
The German University in Cairo
New Cairo City
Main Entrance El Tagamoa El Khames
Tel: +202 27589990-8
Fax: +202 27581041
And also to the GUC Presidential Cabinet: http://www.guc.edu.eg/AboutGUC/en/Trustees/PresidentCabinet.aspx