(previously known as the High Council, the Council of the Citadel, the Khedivial Diwan, the General Assembly, the House of Commons, or the General Council), council founded by MUHAMMAD ALI in 1824 to deal with all the internal affairs of Egypt not related to financial matters. The council’s basic regulations were issued on 3 January 1825; in 1830 those dealing with the organization of its meetings were issued.
These were followed by rules and regulations related to its organization and structure. The most important was the provision made in article 4 of the regulations issued on 1 August 1834, which read, “considering that the Council will deal mostly with matters related to the provinces, it would be appropriate that its members include some men elected from these areas.”
Elsewhere the regulations state that since the council will deal with “cases which concern the Islamic Code it must include two ‘ulemas. Also that it will have before it cases dealing with trade and supplies which calls for the presence of two merchants to deal with such matters. The High Council will also need two clerks conversant in accountancy to be entrusted with keeping accounts.”
It was through this last door that a number of Copts, expert accountants, were able to join the council. But they were only a few, and by that time the council had exhausted its validity, having been replaced by other councils that took over its functions.
YUNAN LABIB RIZQ