Cairo's Sadat metro station (Photo: Al-Ahram)
Cairo's main central metro station is scheduled to reopen in a few days after almost two years of closure that has inconvenienced thousands of passengers, a senior metro official has said.
Lying under the iconic Tahrir Square, Sadat metro station has been shut by police since August 2013, for "security reasons," on the back of a nationwide unrest after the violent dispersal of two pro-Morsi protest camps in Cairo.
The closure of Sadat station, a major stop for switching between metro lines, left many passengers extending their daily commute while contributing to congestion in other Downtown stations.
Ali Fadaly, head of the Egyptian Company for Metro Management and Operation (ECMMO) told Al-Aham daily on Thursday that the station is scheduled to reopen within days, and before the Islamic month of Ramadan — which falls in mid-June.
"Technicians and engineers are conducting safety and security tests to ensure efficient functioning of devices," Fadaly said. He added that Minister of Transport Hany Dahy urged a speedy maintenance process for the reopening.
It is not the first time that police and metro officials say the station will reopen soon, only for it to stay closed.
Over 3.5 million commuters in the sprawling metropolis of Greater Cairo's 21 million inhabitants rely on the subway for their daily travel, according to official estimates by the country's national tunnels authority.