An informed source with Egyptian parliament’s secretariat-general disclosed Monday that all parliament staff, including an estimated 3,000 employees, will face mandatory drug testing in the coming days.
The source said the testing comes upon the request of the health ministry, which asked the parliament’s speaker Ali Abdel-Al in an official letter that he approves a measure requiring all parliamentary to undergo mandatory drug testing.
“This is part of an overall government policy aimed at imposing mandatory drug tests on all employees in state offices and public authorities, including parliament, be they senior officials or low-ranking staff,” said the source.
The source said the health ministry also requested that a special room in parliament be devoted to drug testing.
“The health ministry’s special labs will take charge of conducting these tests next week to determine whether any of the employees use drugs,” said the source, adding that “if anyone tested positive for drug use, he or she will face legal procedures.”
Other anonymous sources indicated that the 594 MPs will not be subjected to mandatory drug tests.
MPs have already passed these tests as part of their registration for parliamentary elections last year, said the sources.
Meanwhile, parliament speaker Ali Abdel-Al and minister of international cooperation Sahar Nasr signed a “cooperation protocol” on Monday.
“The protocol aims at raising the technical and technological capacities of parliamentary employees in terms of modernising the archive system, improving the electronic voting system, storing information, and updating parliament’s news website,” Nasr said.
Nasr also indicated that parliamentary employees will receive intensive training on how to conduct research and opinion polls.
“Under the protocol, parliamentary employees will pay different visits to all Egyptian governorates to identify the needs and priorities of citizens and prepare reports on them to be used by MPs,” Nasr added.
source: Ahram Online