Undersecretary of the Ministry of Education Damietta SayedSwailam (R) meets with Basmala Ali, the abused teenager (L) - Press photo
CAIRO - 29 November 2018: Manal al-Gharib, the mother of Basmala Ali, a teenager who was allegedly abused by her teacher in one of Damietta's schools for her skin color, announced waiving their right to have the teacher criminally judged.
"My daughter does not want her teacher to get imprisoned," Gharib said in an interview with Masrawy. She added in another interview that her daughter went in bad psychological episode when she watched her teacher on TV and subsequently requested to reconcile with the teacher especially due to his age.
Gharib said she headed to the court to reconcile in terms of the criminal side of the issue only, adding that they will not reconcile or withdraw their complaint on the administrative and punitive sides.
On the other hand, Al-Watan newspaper managed to contact Ahmed Deyab, the brother of the teacher who was photographed in some newspapers with blurred eyes like criminals following the incident.
Although the teacher apologized for what he did, we were shocked that a complaint and a lawsuit were filed against him, and that the 57-year old teacher was subsequently imprisoned, Deyab said, adding that his brother is a teacher who has raised several generations of students over 36 years of teaching. He also pointed out that his brother has been honored five times as an exemplary teacher.
Deyab added that the teacher was only kidding with the teenager student as he treated her as his granddaughter.
The Arabic language teacher, Samy Deyab, has faced harsh official responses after he allegedly described the girl as "black." The teacher however denied the charge, saying that he described her as "dark-skinned" and not black. "How can I mock her brown skin [while] my skin is [also] brown," the teacher said to the General Prosecution, according to media reports.
Deyab wrote a phrase on the board during a class exercise saying "Basmala [Ali] is a black girl," according to the accusations. The phrase was apparently written as an exercise for students in an educational context.
Describing someone as "black" can sound offensive in many communities inside Egypt which includes locals and foreigners with various skin colors.
The General Prosecution ordered the detention of the teacher in the Martyr Gamal Saber preparatory school for four days pending investigation. The educational directorate referred the teacher to investigation and he was moved subsequently to another school following the incident.
Moreover, Damietta Governor Manal Awad headed to the school to meet with Basmala, where the governor gave the teenager a flower bouquet and made sure the teacher was moved from the school, according to media reports.
Minister of Education Tarek Shawki said in an interview with Kol Youm on ON E that the ministry rejects any abuse carried out by a member of the educational entity, and will take legal measures against abusers. He added that this was what happened with the teacher who abused Basmala Ali, a student in one of Damietta's schools.