CAIRO: During his speech at the National Democratic Party’s sixth annual conference, President Hosni Mubarak highlighted the important role of the party’s younger members.
“The party’s young members … have a clear vision for the nation’s future, and propose new ideas to deal with the reality [in Egypt], Mubarak said.
“I will not tolerate negligence and slackness that undervalue citizens or jeopardize their safety and lives, he added.
In the conference, whose slogan is “For You, Mubarak underlined the importance of the youth’s role in Egypt’s development. He explained that the party’s youth has been actively participating since 2002.
The president further outlined the progress the party has made since the 2005 elections in different fields.
With regards to Egypt’s economy, Mubarak said that the party is actively combating poverty. He indicated a 6 percent increase in the country’s GDP and an increase in foreign direct investment.
Mubarak said that as per the 2005 election campaign promises, exports have increased by 20 percent since July 2004. Mubarak added that the party succeeded in creating 3.4 million job opportunities in four years.
He also said that there has been a 115 percent increase in minimum wages during the past four years.
Mubarak called for regulating population growth in Egypt, highlighting the gravity of the issue.
Furthermore, he discussed the steps the party has taken in developing education, transport, incentives for attracting investors and supporting decentralization within government.
In his speech, Mubarak urged against underestimating the NDP’s continuous efforts to prepare for the upcoming presidential elections in 2011.
Steel mogul Ahmed Ezz was quoted in Al-Gomhuria newspaper as saying, “We are ready for the next presidential elections and we have the capability to win.
“We respect the opposition and we do not fear it, because we are the strongest current on the Egyptian streets, he added.
In his Sunday speech, Gamal Mubarak, who heads the NDP’s policy secretariat said that the party will run these elections “with the heart of one man and that it will achieve better results than the previous elections.
Gamal Mubarak said the party faces three challenges for the next year, the most important of which is preparation for the upcoming elections. However, he added that this will not distract the party from executing the 2005 elections’ campaign promises.
Criticizing the party and attacking it will not divert it from achieving what is best for the society, he said, stressing that the political reality in Egypt is changing.
“The NDP is not monopolizing the political arena but has visions and policies that we are willing to share with other parties, he said.
Reacting to the NDP convention speeches, Ayman Nour, former presidential candidate and founder of Al-Ghad party, told Daily News Egypt that, “The president’s speech is very smooth and does not imply anything regarding the role of his son for the next elections. However, the conference attempts to draw attention to Gamal Mubarak as a political leader ready to take on a presidential role.
In the run-up to the convention, speculation was rife regarding scenarios for the succession of power in Egypt. There is widespread belief that President Mubarak is grooming his son Gamal for Egypt’s top official post, even though both have publicly denied it on several occasions.