President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi issued a presidential decree to enforce the recently-decided media and press institution laws on Tuesday.
The press institution draft law was already passed by parliament with a two-thirds majority in December. These institutions include an independent Supreme Council for Media Organisations, a National Press Authority, and a National Media Authority.
Names of the members and heads of the institutions were announced. Former press syndicate leader Makram Mohamed Ahmed will be appointed to the council, journalist Karam Gabr to the Press Authority, and media figure Hussein Zein to the Media Authority.
The council aims to regulate media and press affairs. Meanwhile, the other two authorities will be assigned to looking into press-related legislations, monitoring the financial and administrative performance of national institutions, and appointing the heads of their boards of directors.
The National Press Authority is scheduled to replace the current Supreme Press Council, and the National Media Authority will replace the current Egyptian Radio and Television Union (ERTU).
Among the newly decided institutions is the Media Syndicate for media workers that has not been officially operating yet. However, its head has been appointed to be Hamdy Kenaisy, the former radio chief.
Kenaisy has already started working on starting the syndicate.
The press community has been long awaiting the issuance of a unified media law in order to tackle the ethical regulation of media and press outlets and fairly address the issue of imprisonment for crimes related to publishing, in accordance with constitutional articles guaranteeing freedom of expression and banning censorship.
The unified media law became neglected and talks about it stopped, despite it being a main issue discussed over the past years for the future of the media.