Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi on Sunday had an inspection tour in Cairo’s Ezbet Al-Haggana to follow-up on the ongoing development happening at the slum district, a statement from the presidency said.
Presidential Spokesperson Bassam Rady said in the statement that El-Sisi has directed the continuation of the state’s approach and its efforts to develop all random, insecure, and unplanned areas spread across the country from all sides.
El-Sisi has also ordered to determine the scale of efforts to change the reality of those areas in a way that improves the daily living conditions of the citizens and provides a decent life for the families residing within them, in addition to linking such areas to the new road network in the surrounding areas and providing various basic services, Rady said.
Among the officials who accompanied the president during his tour were the prime minister, and the ministers of electricity, water resources and irrigation, petroleum, education, planning and economic development, local development, trade and industry, housing, and health.
Egypt has been pushing forward with efforts to re-house residents of unsafe areas as part of the country's plan to put an end to the problem of informal residential areas countrywide by 2030.
The phenomenon of informal settlements was first put in the national spotlight in 2008 following the collapse of a rock face on the edge of Al-Moqattam, which led to the deaths and injury of scores of people living in the Doueyka area and highlighted the urgency of addressing housing challenges.
Since then, plans to eliminate urban slums have progressed in tandem with the development of new urban communities. According to the Informal Settlements Development Fund (ISDF), unplanned areas comprise 40 percent of urban construction in Egypt and are home to 22 million people. By 2030, the ISDF hopes to have eliminated unplanned areas entirely.
The model housing communities already built to relocate slum residents include the Asmarat complex in Al-Moqattam, Masaken Othman, the Mahrousa Projects, and Bashayer Al-Kheir. In the last six years, the Ministry of Housing has constructed 165,958 housing units at a cost of LE41 billion and is currently working on a further 74,927 units.