Egypt maintains nationwide state of maximum preparedness for unstable weather

Ahram Online , Sunday 12 Dec 2021

Egypt’s Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly urged all governorates nationwide on Sunday to maintain a state of maximum preparedness in anticipation of unstable weather and rainy season, a Cabinet statement said.

Mostafa Madbouly
Egypt s Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly chairs a meeting with a group of ministers and governors, 11 December 2021. Egyptian Cabinet

In a meeting with a number of ministers and governors on Saturday, Madbouly ordered governorates’ authorities to take all measures required to activate crisis rooms and continuously coordinate with the Egyptian Meteorological Authority (EMA) and other relevant authorities.

Madbouly ordered governorates to ensure storm drains are continuously cleaned and that there is enough equipment available to deal with accumulated rainwater in streets.

This comes “in light of the precautionary measures the state is taking to protect citizens’ lives and property from the dangers of rain, floods, and torrential rain,” the statement read.

As Egypt mainly relies on the sewage network to drain rainwater rather than a separate rainwater drainage network, the government has, in recent years, begun the implementation of several national projects to modernise roads and the sewage system.

Last year, the parliament’s Housing Committee approved EGP 33 billion within the general budget for FY2020/21 for water and sanitation projects.

This was deemed the largest budget to be allocated for the sector in the history of the country.

Several governorates, especially in northern Egypt, have suffered from moderate to heavy rainfall and a wave of bad weather over November and December, causing some governorates to raise the state of emergency, enforcing brief school closures, and deploying vacuum trucks to remove accumulated rainwater.

Torrential rains turned deadly in Egypt several times over recent years during the rainy season in winter, causing buildings and facilities to collapse and citizens to be electrocuted while walking through flooded streets.

In March 2020, widespread flooding caused by heavy rain across large swathes of Egypt killed at least 20 people in two days, according to the Cabinet, describing the weather as “exceptional and unprecedented.”

 

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