One could agree or disagree with Dr. Abdul Monem Abo Al Fotouh, but nobody can deny the impact he has on the political and humanitarian arena in Egypt.
He was that young man, the student at the Faculty of Medicine, who stood up before former president “Sadat”, courageously confronted him, yet with the utmost politeness which he was known to possess, he told the president that he surrounds himself with hypocrites, never fearing when the president was outraged saying: “Stand still,” he replied calmly: “Well I am”. This is Abdul Monem Abo Al Fotouh when he was young.
He got arrested in all reigns: Sadat’s, Mubarak’s and Sisi’s.
Abo Al Fotouh also is the man of humanitarian aid in the Medicine Syndicate. He was always there for the wretched of the earth.
Moreover, he is the politician who always dreamed of reconciliation between all national streams, yet, his dream never came true.
Abdul Monem Abo Al Fotouh believes in political Islam, but unlike the majority of Islamists, he believes in the possibility, even the necessity, of coexistence. He always sought cooperation between all political parties under one national umbrella, based on a strong foundation of mutual respect and equality. No superiority, no feelings of being “closer to God” or more patriotic. He resents the usual Islamist arrogant attitude.
He is a true believer who never profited from his beliefs, spending his life serving others regardless of their political orientation or religious beliefs. Trying to understand political Islam from his independent perceptive, Abo Al Fotouh was rejected by his own Islamist peers, to find himself alone, only representing himself.
After announcing that he was running for the presidential elections, the Muslim Brotherhood group expelled him from its membership though he was a member in the guidance bureau. He founded “Masr Al Qawya” (Strong Egypt) party in order to form a third current that suggests a reconciliation formula that unites the national currents.
During the rule of former president Mohamed Morsi, with his usual courage, Abo Al Fotouh faced Morsi and demanded early elections.
Yet, courageously again, he refused the military coup.
The new regime followed the “silencing” policy. However, Abo Al Fotouh never stopped talking. In an interview with a satellite channel, while he was abroad, Abo Al Fotouh spoke up criticizing the regime bravely and politely. After the interview was aired, some social media users pleaded with him not to go back to Egypt, nevertheless he returned knowing that the probability of his arrest was high and indeed he got arrested.
On the 15th of February 2018, Abo Al Fotouh was interrogated for five hours in case No. 440 of 2018 State Security. A decision of detaining him pending the case was issued by the prosecution on charges of incitement, doubting, stirring confusion through media outlets hostile towards the Egyptian state, joining a group established contrary to the provisions of the law and the constitution, and harming Egypt’s reputation abroad.
Abdul Monem Abo Al Fotouh has underwent numerous violations since he was arrested. He is confined in a solitary cell, never practices his right to a walk except in an isolated narrow place for 30 minutes. Abo Al Fotouh also suffers from medical neglect in prison, he has high blood pressure, cardiac and back problems and he is deprived of treatment in the prison hospital.
Dr. Abdul Monem Abo Al Fotouh is a prisoner of opinion who deserves his freedom.