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Thursday, 15 December 2016

Last Night’s Talk Shows: Talking heads call for more police; Pharma rejects Health Ministry’s latest concession; concerns over Media Act

Kol Yom’s Amr Adib spent a good portion of last night’s episode criticizing law enforcement and the judiciary (watch, runtime: 0:57). Adib wondered why a country as large and as populated as Egypt would admit only 1,800 citizens out of 70,000 applicants to the country’s single police academy. “Especially under these circumstances, you need officers, you need security,” he said. “Why do we only have one police academy? Why don’t we have another in Upper Egypt for instance?” (watch, runtime 4:02). Adib said there must be some way “to modernize and develop the Egyptian police force.” (watch, runtime 1:30)

The host then interviewed Orascom Hotels and Development’s CEO Samih Sawiris on the new EGP 55 mn Bedouin village in Taba in South Sinai developed by Sawiris Foundation for Social Development and Orascom Hotels and Development to support the Bedouin community in the area. “The aim of this project is to allow the Bedouins living in the area to truly identify with the place and feel at home,” said Sawiris (watch, runtime 13:36).

Over on MBC, Yahduth fi Masr’s Sherif Amer spent the evening discussing the latest in the Health Ministry’s tangle with pharma producers. Ali El Ghamrawy, a member of the Federation of Egyptian Chambers of Commerce’s pharma division, said that while the industry “appreciates” the Ministry’s offer (allowing companies to raise the prices of 10% of their locally produced products, while imported meds would be bumped up by 15%), “it just won’t do.” He said that companies need to raise prices on 30% of their products to remain in operation (more on that in the Speed Round).

For the other half of the episode, Amer spoke to political commentator Mostafa El Fekki, who gave a brief overview of the history of suicide attacks in Egypt. El Fekki said that in the struggle against terrorism, the Egyptian administration should focus on developing education, finding the sources that fund terrorist acts, and enforcing stricter punishments. Amer then told audiences that unnamed security officials confirmed to him that the militant Islamist figure Adel Habara will be executed within 48 hours.

Amer also announced that security forces had identified suspects in the attack of a police checkpoint in Giza last weekend. <br Ibrahim Eissa, stressed the vital role that education and transparency have to play in helping Egypt overcome its current crises. “The way the political administration in Egypt deals with terrorism is outdated and has proven its failure since these acts of terrorism continue to take place,” Eissa said (watch, runtime 38:39). Eissa also moderated his weekly Wednesday debate, which was about the new Media Act that the House of Representatives had voted in favor of earlier in the day. (watch, runtime 4:28) <br Al Hayah Al Youm’s Tamer Amin was also concerned with the draft Media Act. He spoke to the head of the House’s committee on media, Osama Heikal, who said that the House intends to vote on the second bill that is part of the Media Act — which would regulate the media — by next week (watch, runtime 5:48). MP and film director Khaled Youssef told Amin that he voted against the legislation because it allows the state to appoint most members of the Supreme Media Council and that he had hoped for “more balanced representation” (watch, runtime 6:00).

Lamees El Hadidy was off last night.

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