President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi approved the formation of a committee for “the development of morals and conscience and the promotion of work ethics and values of belonging,” proposed by Egypt’s Scholars Council.
In a meeting with Sisi on Wednesday, the council of Egypt’s experts and scholars, which comprises high-profile figures, proposed forming a committee that works on “improving the morals and values in the Egyptian society,” according to a statement on the president’s Facebook page.
The committee would work under the auspices of the president.
Sisi said that society’s morals and values are the key drive behind citizens’ behavior and play a major role in the nation’s development.
“They are also a motivator for more work and production,” he said, “and promote progress and civilization.”
In a phone-in on ONtv, council member Mervat al-Deeb, said that Sisi approved the formation of the committee, which was primarily suggested by fellow member and renowned psychiatrist Ahmed Okasha.
She said that Okasha regularly proposes ideas to the council on how to develop morals, along with projects and initiatives suggested by different bodies.
Deeb cited an initiative submitted by the Alexandria governor on raising citizens’ awareness on “how to behave” in public. The initiative would tackle issues of littering, vandalism and so on, she said.
“It will be the committee’s role to look into these initiatives,” she said.
Deeb said that the majority of Egypt’s problems are related to the public’s behavior and values, adding that the media and education play a major role in shaping such morals.
She affirmed that morals “are not relative,” citing examples such as respecting the other or having a sense of responsibility towards one another.
“We are talking about values that rule the human race,” she said.
Council member Mohamed Ghoneim said that the multi-pronged proposal involves the education sector, the media and Al-Azhar.
He explained that improving social and economic conditions are also crucial for improving society’s moral standards.