“Lowered number of marriage contracts has been witnessed since the outbreak of the coronavirus in Egypt,” says an official at the Marriage Registration Authority.

“The number of marriage contracts witnessed a noticeable decrease due to the coronavirus, as many women refuse to marry without holding a marriage ceremony,” said Head of the Official Marriage Registration Authority Ibrahim Selim.

He further explained that this decline has negatively affected life and families of the officials authorized to perform marriage ceremonies (known in Arabic as ma’zoun), who do not a fixed wage or monthly salary due to the low turnout.

People working as ma’zouns cannot do another job at the same time like assuming a governmental position, work as lawyers, or teachers, as per the law regulating their work. “That’s why most ma’zouns suffer from difficult economic conditions,” according to Selim.

He also said that there is no syndicate for ma’zouns to act as a legal umbrella for them, and provide them with financial aids during the crisis, adding that a draft law for the syndicate is still being discussed at the Parliament.