An Egyptian newsreader is making the headlines herself, becoming the first female Egyptian newsreader to appear on television wearing a headscarf in the post-Mubarak era
Fatima Nabil, a Cairo television news anchor made the news when she appeared on Channel 1’s primetime bulletin broadcast on Sunday wearing a hijab.
It is estimated that 70% of the female population in Egypt wear veils. But under President Mubarak, female television presenters were banned from appearing on camera wearing a hijab
Many sued against the policy and won, but Mubarak’s Ministry of Information ignored the rulings and continued to enforce the ban.
The new Egyptian regime under the Muslim Brotherhoods, led by conservative president Mohamed Morsi, recently abolished the ban on female presenters covering their hair.
“It is a historic day for me,” Nabil said in an interview with the newspaper Al- Masry al-Youm.
“Standards have nothing to do with the veil, which is a personal choice, but are all about professional skills andintellect,” she said.
Muslim Brotherhood Information Minister Salah Abdel-Maksoud, gave the “green light” for women to appear on television wearing hijab.
“Having someone who wears a hijab”, Abdel-Maksoud said, was in line with the “enforcement of the principle of justice in the field of media,”
Those who fought for democracy as part of the revolution in Tahrir Square in early 2011 hoped that freedom of press would develop in the post-Mubarak era.
Those hopes were largely dashed when, on August 8, the Muslim Brotherhood controlled Shura Council announced a media crackdown, with dozens of new editors appointed to many state-owned newspapers and magazines, signalling a wave of new media censorship.
According to Reuters, three Egyptian columnists have complained that their articles were removed by a new committee of editors chosen by the Egyptian parliament to monitor state-run newspapers for anti-Brotherhood opinions.
Critics have also indicated that the new ruling regarding the presence of veiled women on state television is not an indication of freedom, suggesting instead that the power has merely shifted from a secular government to an Islamic controlled government and has nothing to do with progress.
What do you think? Have your say below.