Interview with Muslim Sisters Yomna Al Shekha and her mum Zainab Al Said

Q: What is your point of view regarding the strike in the American University of Cairo for the rights of the workers?

Y: We demand transparency from the administration, where all money goes and how is it possible that the workers get only 200 LE? Definitely Mubarak does not have anything to do with our university, but for sure he encouraged the corruption all through Egypt, in somehow even in our university because the educational system in Egypt is nowadays so poor. I believe that education might be the most powerful weapon to fight what is going on in the country.

Q: Transparency, but kind of politic can be applied to Egypt to make it realized?

Y: In economics, transparency is a must. The way to get there is erase any kind of corruption and to achieve democracy.

Q: A policeman take 500 LE per month, the only way to round off his salary is through “tip” from normal people … so it’d be very difficult to erase this behaviour. But technically, how do the youth want to actualize this kind of transparency? The only income for a police

Y: First of all, the elimination can be done by implementing human rights, these are the bases of any decent human being has to have, then a decent salary. In the university for instance, we need to know how much is the president earning, and the administration, to have more transparency. If anyone is personally satisfied by his decent income, there wouldn’t be such briberies. Corruption normally appears when you lack something, when you don’t have something, like Mubarak tired to get everything away from the people and then he said “It’s your fault”, but he took everything and he corrupted everything. This is why I think that respecting human rights might be a starting point.

Q: Which one are the demands from the protesters?

Y: We are asking for a price ceiling, in such a way there are not big gaps in purchase between the university president and workers.

Q: Do you mean a much more equal distribution of the richness?

Y: Exactly, but also a better organization into the university.

Q: Did you expect the revolution?

Y: No, I did not … no one was expecting it.

Q: What are you expecting for the future then?

Y: I hope that this country will go back to its great as it was before. It doesn’t matter of what kind of problem my suddenly come out, we can all put differences and our ideologies like we did during the days of the evolution. Right now we need parliamentary election, and I do not agree with people who say Egyptian are not well educated and prepared for it, because the Egyptians know what is good for them or not. We definitely will be back to our greatness, for all those martyrs who died in the revolution defending their belief. We don’t have to give up the utopia we had in the square.

Q: Which one you think will be your role and the Muslim women one too in the new Egypt?

Y: Actually, the women have many roles, not just one. First, they should raise the kids, to be understanding, to defend their own rights … all these people went to Tahrir thanks to their mums because they were raised in that way; she should be an ideal for anyone to look at her; she should defend her own believes and values, she should fight for what she won … for this purpose she is hugely supported by Islam, because women are free to do whatever they want. So, she has a lot of roles.

Q: Are you a member of the Muslim Sisters?

Y: Yes, but we don’t call them Muslim Sisters, we are all Muslim Brotherhood.

Q: How you felt the revolution?

Y: We are mostly kids in the family, I am the older of 4 children and I am only 17 years old, but last day of the protest we went to Tahrir square with our parents

INTERVIEW with Yomna’s mother: Zainab Al Said Mohamed

Q: In Egypt there is a big problem regarding the single mothers and their children, almost 4 millions, which go around in the streets begging for money. These kids are not recognized by the law …

Z: The kids in the streets are not the same that you might have inEuropefrom single mothers who through their children in the streets. These kids in Egypt for sure have parents who have left them in orphanage. But the vagabond children are something different; you will find this problem mostly in Cairo’s slums, where they live under really bad conditions of poverty which constrains them to go away. A huge number of kids run away from their families, because they are very numerous, and they cannot take care of all of them, the parents force their kids to work and then get all the money, so after a while the children run away. So the problem is related to the poverty and it is not like in Europe.

Q: Is there any chance in the future that the new government will grant legal rights to the single mothers?

Z: Of course there will chance for the children, because this one it’s their country, they are victims, for sure. They have the right to get a good education, to live like human, because they are entitled to have rights, they belong to the society and there should be a good way to sort it out otherwise, in the future they will be just criminals. The problem was caused by the corruption and faults of the previous regime, which had a large amount of money but it didn’t invest in social schemes and aids, the street children is one amongst those. This is why we ask for an independent juridical power, in such a way it will be free to investigate and inspect cases of corruption and misleads from the government; it will monitor that no one will take advantages from other people’s rights!

Q: How is the relationship between woman and man into the MB?

Z: My religion asked to not make any difference in treatment between the males and females. I will tell you a story. There is a man who asked to the prophet Mohamed he wanted to give a present to one of his children, the prophet said to him that he can’t do so, he cannot make difference or favouritism between his children, even if it was just a kiss … because he has to kiss them all. So this is a good method that we all have to follow: it’s a kind of justice because our religion is full of justice and mercy, these are more or less the bases of our organization and between the MB you will find very normal people: professor, doctors and workers … they all take care of their friends, neighbours, they are not people who live isolated from the reality.

Q: I met many people from the MB and the political party and I asked the about what they will do if they win in the elections and I asked them about the economy, the politics, the social policies, the education and health structures. So, what is your point of view?

Z: Even before we made the political party, we agreed that there wouldn’t be any candidate from us for the presidential election; for the parliamentary election we won’t get more than 1/3 of the seats. Went I want to tell you something for this people who are worried from the MB, but with just 1/3 of the parliament there is nothing to be worried about. And in the organization, we have people who they are open minded and open to the world and, anyway I believe that most of the people are religious by nature.

5 commenti

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