CAIRO: The latest in Prime Minister Ahmed Nazif’s controvertial speeches is causing a stir once again. His latest statement labeled corruption in the country as “normal. The independent opposition daily Al-Dostour, known for its aggressive criticism of the government, reported that the premier had downplayed the drinking water crisis escalating in many Egypt governorates. The premier, the paper continued, said citizens had gotten accustomed to free water and thus have been misusing it.
Two weeks ago, Nazif lashed out at human rights organizations saying they only report the negative aspects of the society.
The Daily Star Egypt asked ordinary Egyptians what they thought of the PM s remarks.
The corruption rate in Egypt is very high because we have so many problems that the country is suffering from and remain unsolved. As for the water problem, it will escalate because our population is increasing and the water resources are not increasing at the same rate.
Habiba Youser Alway, graduate student at The American University in Cairo (AUC).
“We have always been facing problems with water. This problem has now grown bigger and the country cannot do anything to it because the new cities like those built in New Cairo abuse their water resources and consume more than their need and the poor villagers pay the price.
40-year-old housewife, name withheld.
I didn’t hear about these statements because I don’t read opposition press. Nazif held a meeting with cabinet and president Mubarak to find solutions to the problem of water shortage in some Egyptian villages and as far as I know the president decided to increase the government subsidizes on water in those villages.
50-year-old businessman, name withheld.
The corruption is really high in Egypt due to the lack of laws that could end problems. There are a lot of small problems that citizens face in Egypt that the government does not give attention to and hence they are solved illegally.
Rasha A., university graduate.