NPA affirms Al-Ahram journalist who committed suicide was not deprived of incentives

The National Press Authority (NPA) in Egypt revealed details surrounding the suicide of journalist Emad al-Fekky at his office in Al-Ahram newspaper’s building, stressing that official documents showed he was not deprived of his financial incentives or promotions.

The NPA said that an investigation was conducted into a claim made by another journalist that Fekky committed suicide because he has been deprived of promotions and bonuses at Al-Ahram Foundation.

Official documents of Al-Ahram Foundation and the testimonies of officials stated that the deceased had received the full annual bonus without any delay I payments over the past four years, the most recent of which was in February 2022, according to the NPA.

He was last promoted to Deputy Editor-in-Chief in 2012, according to his service file with the foundation, the NPA added.

The NPA said that its initiative to conduct investigations into the incident aimed to reveal the truth to the public in response to rumors circulated on social media about the gross injustice that the deceased had allegedly been subjected to, causing him to commit suicide at his office.

Al-Ahram Editor-in-Chief Alaa Thabet filed an official investigate those who spread these rumors, stressing his innocence and the innocence of the foundation’s officials.

In April, Egyptian media reported that a journalist in the state-run Al-Ahram newspaper Emad al-Fekky has committed suicide in his office.

Fekky committed suicide by hanging himself in his office on the fourth floor in the famous Al-Ahram newspaper building in downtown Cairo, in what was deemed mysterious circumstances.

The Azbakeya prosecutors took over the investigation and ordered to summon eyewitnesses and the journalist’s wife.

He committed suicide by hanging after which his head separated from his body falling from the balcony of his office on the fourth floor.

A team of detectives listened to the statements of his colleagues and eyewitnesses to determine the circumstances of the incident, and another team examined the surveillance cameras in the vicinity of the incident to reveal its circumstances.

The investigative authorities also summoned the journalist’s family to hear their statements.

On the other hand, Mahmoud Kamel, a member of the Journalists Syndicate board, commented on the incident, on his personal Facebook page, saying: “All the colleagues in Al-Ahram who have been close to the late colleague know very well that in the last four years he was subjected to systematic persecution.

It seems he wasn’t able to reach his potential  and was deprived of incentives and profits over these years.

He was informally prevented from practicing his journalistic work without a reason and was subjected to injustice].”

He missed his promotion to be head of his department several times as part of this persecution, he added.

“The deceased chose to send a message from the place of his death to every editor-in-chief, to the head of the National Press Authority and its members, to the Journalists’ Syndicate and members of its board, and to every press leader that practices oppression,” Kamel added.

“The message has reached your colleagues. May God have mercy on you and forgive you,” he wrote.

In response to these statements, Alaa Thabet, editor-in-chief of Al-Ahram newspaper spoke to Masrawy in an  exclusive interview. 

He said that he had contacted the Journalists’ Syndicate chairman Diaa Rashwan, regarding the statements of Kamel, adding that he would take legal measures against Kamel’s statements.

He also added: “With all the prayers for mercy and forgiveness for the dear late colleague, I regret that I have to, unfortunately and in pain, participate in a sterile controversy to correct false information, although it is neither the right time nor the right space for it.”

He described Kamel’s statements as hateful exploitation of the feelings of sympathy and love that flowed from the people who loved the deceased after the painful tragedy of his passing.

“I firmly affirm that everything published by my colleague Mahmoud Kamel, a member of the Journalists’ Syndicate board, is fiction and vague and incomprehensible,” he continued.

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