CAIRO: Dozens of Helwan residents protested Wednesday outside the Shoura Council against a Cabinet decision to divide a constituency represented by Member of Parliament Mostafa Bakry.
The Cabinet had decided in a meeting Monday to present a draft decree before the Shoura Council (the Upper House of the Parliament) to cancel constituency number 25 and merge it with another represented by MP Sayed Meshal, who is also the Minister of State for Military Production.
Bakry’s brother, Mahmoud, explained that by doing this, the constituency where Bakry has gained a wide popularity will no longer exist by the coming election, which may compromise his potential to win a parliament seat in the coming round.
“Bakry has always been kind and generous to the constituency residents, offering help to poor girls getting married and providing opportunities for old women to go for Hajj and Umrah,” Fayza Ahmed, from Arab Al-Wadi area, told Daily News Egypt during the demonstration.
“Who would serve us like this other than him,” the elderly woman added.
Another protester spoke of Bakry’s success in managing the gas cylinders and sewage water leakage crises that they suffered from and distributing blankets every winter.
“Bakry has always supervised these procedures himself. We would never accept any MP other than him,” he said.
Bakry has accused MP and businessman Ahmed Ezz, the leading National Democratic Party (NDP) member, of being behind the decision.
Bakry’s Al-Osbou, an independent weekly newspaper, accused Ezz of plotting against Bakry after the latter won the title of the most positive MP in a survey conducted in 2009 by the Cabinet’s Information and Decisions Support Center (IDSC). Ezz, on the other hand, took the title of the most negative MP by a similar survey.
In addition, Bakry had fiercely criticized Ezz and accused him of monopolizing steel, exposing facts about his acquisition of El Dekheila Steel.
Bakry is the executive editor-in-chief and board chairman of Al-Osbou.
“I will practice my legal and constitutional right to run for election…we are not (living) in Ezz’s estate (here),” Bakry said in a telephone interview with Orbit’s “Al-Qahira Al-Youm” nightly show.
Helwan residents will hold another protest Saturday morning.
“We will keep protesting until this decision is cancelled,” a protester told Daily News Egypt.