Egypt's cabinet reshuffle to see new interior, finance ministers

Ahram Online and MENA, Saturday 5 Jan 2013

Also to be installed ministers of transportation, local development, supply and interior trade, electricity, communication and information technology, legal and parliamentary affairs, civil aviation, and environment

Hisham Qandil
Egypt's Prime Minister Hisham Qandil (Photo: AP)

Ten Egyptian ministers are decided to be replaced in a partial cabinet reshuffle, including the interior and finance ministers, state news agency MENA reported.

The Ministry of Interior will be taken over by General Mohamed Ibrahim, who was an assistant of former minister Ahmed Gamal and head of the prison service.

The new Minister of Finance will be El-Morsi Hegazy, an economics professor at the University of Alexandria and author of several articles on Islamic banking.

Succeeding Rashad El-Metiny, who resigned as Minister of Transportation following the infamous Assiut accident that killed tens of children last November, is Hatem Abdel-Latif, an engineering professor at Ain Shams University.

Abdel-Latif is also a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, the group from which President Mohamed Morsi hails.

Two more members of the powerful Islamist group are included in the imminent ministerial appointments.

Bassem Ouda, who headed the fuel file in Morsi's 100-day plan and is the chairman of the energy committee of the Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party, will be installed as Minister of Supply and Interior Trade.

Mohamed Ali Beshr, a Brotherhood member since 1979 and engineering professor at the University of El-Menoufia, shall be appointed as Minister of Local Development.

Beshr will replace Ahmed Zaki Abdeen, who stirred up controversy of late with a decision to close down shops across Egypt starting 10pm. The decision was never put in effect.

Engineer Ahmed Imam, who was appointed last December as assistant to ex-Minister of Electricity Mahmoud Balbaa, has been chosen to replace the latter.

Imam, who shall be tasked with preempting anticipated power outages next summer due to fuel shortages, was also the head of Cairo Electricity Production Company from 2002 to 2011.

Atef Helmi, ex-chief executive of computer technology corporation – Oracle – in Egypt, was appointed as Minister of Communication and Information Technology.

Omar Salem will become the Minister of State for Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, a position he held under the interim premiership of Kamal El-Ganzouri, the predecessor of incumbent Prime Minister Hisham Qandil.

The new Minister of Civil Aviation will be Wael El-Maadawi, who was the head of Smart Aviation Company – a corporate airline operator.

Khaled Fahmy Abdel-Aal was picked to be the Minister of State for Environmental Affairs.

The ten candidates are to take oath before President Mohamed Morsi on Sunday before assuming their respective roles in Qandil's four-month-old cabinet, which consists of 35 ministries.

Late last month, Morsi commissioned Qandil to instigate the necessary ministerial changes after the government had faced a baptism of fire due to chronic economic woes and political turmoil.

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