Middle East

Practice accident in Egypt: anger on the refusal of the Minister of Transport to resign

Anger erupted on social media after Egyptian Transport Minister Kamel al-Wazir mentioned he wouldn’t resign following a practice crash that killed dozens of individuals.

Two passenger trains collided in Sohag governorate in southern Egypt on Friday, killing 19 folks and injuring greater than 180.

The collision, which rail officers say was brought on by the emergency brakes being triggered by “strangers”, has brought about rising frustration on the bottom in addition to on-line.

Higher Egypt in agony as households mourn victims of practice crash

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In a single TV interview, Wazir mentioned he wouldn’t stop his submit regardless of rising requires his resignation.

“I am not used to escaping … I am unable to escape it.” If, after every incident, the ministers resigned, what good would it not not be higher for me to remain in my place till issues had been sorted out?

“I do all I can, and God is my witness, for my nation and my president who trusts me … if I’m lazy and never doing my job, then I’ll resign as a result of that will make me a traitor. .

Nonetheless, regardless of Wazir’s claims that he and the railway staff had been planning to enhance the nation’s transportation system, the minister’s feedback weren’t effectively acquired on-line.

One social media consumer questioned his feedback, tweeting: “And who decides your failures or your laziness, is that you simply too?”

Egypt has to this point arrested eight folks in reference to the practice incident, based on AFP.

In accordance with a press release from the Egyptian prosecution, the 2 drivers, their assistants, the site visitors guard and the site visitors chief alongside two of their guards had been positioned in pre-trial detention.

On-line, folks continued to name for accountability after the devastating crash.

Translation: The engineer, Kamel al-Wazir, says he’s not going to resign as a result of he’s not used to shirking his duties. However resignation means taking accountability, not operating away from it. The shortcoming to run an important service regardless of all of the requires enchancment implies that one thing is unsuitable and there was a serious failure which has led to those dire penalties.

Translation: Kamel al-Wazir’s dialog with Amr Adib and his reiteration that he is not going to resign as a result of he’s decided to struggle and never run away from the difficulty and betray his nation epitomizes the query when a navy individual assumes a civil-political function. It doesn’t perceive problems with political accountability and is senseless when main political failures and errors happen.

The minister’s feedback additionally known as into query his method of dealing with the state of affairs and the best way he assumed his submit as Minister of Transport.

Wazir is a navy normal and former chairman of the Armed Forces Engineering Authority. His Appointment sparked additional criticism of the federal government of President Abdel Fatteh el-Sisi for its failure to forestall tragic rail incidents. Final week was the fifth practice crash since Sisi took energy in a navy coup in 2013.

Following the incident on Friday, the hashtag “resign from Sissi” was within the prime spot for just a few hours, with greater than 7,000 folks utilizing the phrase to precise their dismay at what had occurred and on the corruption which they declare was on the root of the incident.

The practice collision occurred throughout a time when Egyptian hospitals are overwhelmed because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Human Rights Watch researcher Amr Magdi highlighted the sample of street accidents in Egypt and in contrast the shortage of funding for higher transportation to Egypt’s navy spending, which increased by 136% compared to 2016-19 based on SIPRI, an impartial worldwide institute that conducts analysis on battle and arms management.

Some have additionally raised the megaprojects taken on by Sisi’s authorities as fundamental infrastructure seems to be fatally down.

Earlier this yr, Egypt introduced a brand new $ 23 billion investment plan for a new railway line, which sparked skepticism from the Egyptians who mentioned the cash would have been higher spent on faculties and hospitals, and that the mission was aimed on the Egyptian elite.

In the meantime, money is poured into the development of a brand new administrative capital, which can home the federal government, a presidential palace, the Supreme Court docket and the central financial institution, in addition to an airport and a enterprise district.

Critics have lengthy argued that Egypt can not afford such large tasks, particularly at a time when the healthcare system is weakening and unemployment is rising.

Translation: It is because we don’t admire people – we neglect their training, well being and transportation, and we’ve gone to hunt an excellent in a metropolis surrounded by partitions. However within the previous metropolis, individuals are left to die, by their poverty or neglect …

Egypt has a protracted historical past of rail disasters.

In March final yr, a minimum of 13 folks had been injured when two passenger trains collided in Cairo, inflicting a short suspension of rail providers throughout the nation. On the time, practice managers blamed the accident on indicators that weren’t working in unhealthy climate.

Cairo constructing collapse kills 18

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In February 2019, a practice derailed and caught fireplace on the predominant practice station in Cairo, killing greater than 20 folks and prompting the transport minister to resign.

In the meantime, on Saturday, a constructing collapsed in Cairo, killing 18 folks and in addition triggering a wave of criticism on-line.

Egypt has suffered a number of lethal constructing collapses and industrial fireplace accidents in recent times as a consequence of poor upkeep of many premises and poor compliance with city planning laws.

Revenue-seeking builders additionally usually violate constructing permits by constructing further flooring to residence buildings with no allow, usually leading to poor building.

A six-month-old child has been eliminated alive from below the collapsed constructing as search groups proceed to seek for these nonetheless lacking.

Friday’s crash comes as Egypt faces one other main transport disaster, with a large container ship blocking the Suez Canal and inflicting large site visitors jams at both finish of the strategic delivery lane.

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