On Saturday the prosecution ordered the detention of six Al-Azhar University officials being investigated for involvement in the food poisoning incident.
Over 580 students suffered food poisoning last week after eating a meal served in a student dorm. The prosecution ordered the detention of six officials from the committee responsible for inspecting food at the university dorms.
They are all accused of trading adulterated food and causing unintended injury to students who consumed it. It is believed that a chicken meal led to the food poisoning.
All six of the accused have denied the charges against them, state-run MENA reported.
In response to the food poisoning, many students surrounded the main office of the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar, Ahmed Al-Tayeb, and demanded the dismissal of head of the university Osama Al-Abd and other dorm officials.
Following an emergency meeting on Tuesday and another one on Wednesday, the Grand Imam said elections will be held to replace Al-Abd and his top aides.
Al-Azhar’s student union, which is dominated by Muslim Brotherhood students, was very active in the demonstrations outside Al-Tayeb’s office.
Mohamed Eissa, a member of a Salafi student movement who took part in the protests, said the students were initially calling for the dismissal of Al-Abd, not Al-Tayeb. He said they eventually demanded the removal of Al-Tayeb but this was not the main aim of the protests.
The liberal Al-Dostour Party said in a statement that it condemns what it referred to as the Brotherhood’s plot to oust Al-Azhar’s Grand Imam and take over the religious institution.