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Tony Sullivan

Behind the Brotherhood's losses in historic Doctors' Syndicate elections - Politics - Egypt - Ahram Online - 1 views

  • The Indepenence List also won total, or near total, control of provincial syndicate boards in Ismailiya, Suez and Aswan – governorates where the Brotherhood could claim widespread support for its brand of politics.
  • in the last years of Mubarak, a younger generation of doctors started to organise in rank and file militant groups such as Doctors Without Rights (DWR) outside of the Syndicate’s internal body, against both Mubarak’s regime and the Brotherhood’s conservative union policies. In the aftermath of the January 25 revolution, these radical doctors, many of whom actually took part in the uprising against the dictator and were emboldened by their success in ousting him, embarked on organising their co-workers for campaigns to take workplace actions and strikes to improve their conditions.
  • This contrast between the new attitude of emboldened members and a static leadership was illustrated during the unprecedented national doctors’ strike last May. When doctors in public hospitals took industrial action against the government to demand minimum salaries and increased spending on healthcare from 4 per cent to 15 per cent of the budget, both the president of the Syndicate, Hamdy El-Sayed, and the Brotherhood-controlled national syndicate board denounced the strikers. Dr Mona Mina, a member of DWR who won a seat on the new national syndicate board in last Friday’s election and was one of the organisers of that historic strike, told Ahram Online that doctors found it hard to win that battle because of the Syndicate’s hostile position
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  • Although the Brotherhood backed Abdel Dayem for the position of Syndicate president, the Islamist group will not be able to count on him as an erstwhile ally. In fact, a large number of those who supported Independence and Tahrir candidates also voted for Khairy Abdel Dayem to head the Syndicate. Indeed, Dr Mona Mina herself supported Abdel Dayem for syndicate president. A closer look at Abdel Dayem’s campaign literature and interviews to media actually showed that he pushed economic demands and healthcare reform proposals almost identical to those raised by the Independence and Tahrir lists.
  • Dr Mona Mina, now one of six Independence members of the national syndicate board
  • In the national syndicate board elections, the Independence List won six out of 24 seats, and broke the Brotherhood’s monopoly over power there
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