Mourad Wahba

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Mourad Wahba Pasha (1879-1972) was an Egyptian high court judge and cabinet minister.

Mourad Wahba was born in Cairo, Egypt in 1879, the son of Youssef Wahba Pasha (1852-1934) former Prime Minister of Egypt and grandson of Wahba Bey Youssef a founder of the first Coptic charitable society.[1] Mourad Wahba was educated in Cairo at the College de la Sainte Famille a Jesuit School where Pierre Teilhard de Chardin taught for many years. He obtained his law degree from the Sorbonne in Paris and pursued a lifetime career in the Egyptian judicial system, serving as a Judge on the Native Court of Appeals and then becoming a counsellor on the first Court of Cassation, the highest court in Egypt, from 1931 to 1937.[2] He was highly respected and appreciated by all political parties as an objective and unassuming judge that gave much credibility to the new Court of Cassation. A famous opinion written by Wahba Pasha relate to the revocation of press censorship imposed at the time by Ismail Sidqi Pasha, then Prime Minister of Egypt.[3] It is said that he was personally appointed Minister of Agriculture by King Farouk in the Muhammad Mahmoud Pasha Cabinet in 1937 then Minister of Trade and Industry in 1938.[4] During his tenure as Minister of Agriculture, he inaugurated the Cairo Agricultural Museum, the largest Museum at the time devoted to agriculture since Ancient Egypt.

As an apolitical civil servant, he was reportedly disappointed by his appointment as Minister which had forced him to resign his position on the Court of Cassation. As Vice President of the Court of Cassation he had expected to become President upon the retirement of Abdel Aziz Fahmi Pasha the then President of the Court. His appointment as Minister of Agriculture may have been to avoid a Copt as President of the highest judicial authority in Egypt, a predominantly Muslim country. He was appointed a Senator in 1939 until 1945. He played an important role in Coptic communal affairs serving on the Majlis Milli for several years.[5] He was one of the major shareholders of the Compagnie de Ciment Portland in Egypt founded with the Swiss Cement group Holderbank as well as a member of the Board of Directors of Banque Misr and resigned after the 1952 revolution. He was married to Victoria Ibrahim, daughter of Khalil Ibrahim Pasha, one of the largest landowners in Egypt who had built Our Lady of Zeitoun Church in Zeitun, Cairo the site of various reported apparitions of the Virgin Mary in the 1960s.[6] He had one child Magdi Wahba and died in Cairo in 1972.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Article on Youssef Wahba Pasha, Wikipedia
  2. ^ Report from the British Foreign Office, July 1946-December 1946, part 4, Volume II. See also Mixed Courts of Egypt
  3. ^ Marcel Colombe (1952) L'Evolution de l'Egypte 1924-1950, Bulletin de la Societe de Geographie
  4. ^ Ministry of Agriculture, Arab Republic of Egypt website
  5. ^ British Documents on Foreign Affairs. Reports and Papers from the Foreign Office, Confidential Print. Africa Section, 1946, part 4,University Publications of America, 2000
  6. ^ "Two Thousand Years of Coptic Christianity" by Otto Meinardus, The American University in Cairo, 2010

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