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Thursday, 17 May 2018

Pre-Ramadan slowdown leaves little for the talking heads to discuss

President Abdel Fattah El Sisi’s fifth national youth conference reigned supreme on the airwaves as the pre-Ramadan slowdown left little else for the talking heads to discuss. We have a thorough rundown of El Sisi’s most important statements from the conference in Speed Round, below.

Economy was at forefront of El Sisi’s remarks at daylong event: El Sisi’s comments on the state of the economy and reassurances that he will not put the brakes on reforms were among the most significant to come out of the conference, said Hona Al Asema’s Lamees Al Hadidi. She hailed the president’s vow to offer incentives to businesses who join the formal economy, saying that the move would be beneficial since 60% of Egypt’s economy is informal (watch, runtime: 49:56).

Lamees also showed a graph as visual evidence of the Cairo Metro’s losses over the past several years in a bid to convince viewers that the government’s decision to hike ticket prices was justified. According to Lamees’ data, the metro’s Line 1 needs around EGP 30 bn for development work, while Line 2 needs EGP 15 bn. The host also renewed her calls for commuters to apply for metro memberships (watch, runtime: 3:32).

Adib hails GERD “breakthrough”: Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia’s latest talks on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam were a “breakthrough” but El Sisi noted that the issue has yet to be resolved, Adib told his viewers (watch, runtime: 5:32).

Lamees, Adib, and Masaa DMC’s Osama Kamal all praised El Sisi’s decision to issue a presidential pardon for 332 prisoners, including a few who were arrested for protesting. Lamees made it a point to tell viewers that none of those pardoned face charges of violence or incitement against the state (watch, runtime: 3:27 and runtime: 1:32).

Did we get punk’d by Amr Adib? The Kol Youm host announced last night he is backtracking on his decision to retire from late night television, saying that he will be back by popular demand in September (watch, runtime: 2:06). Good luck getting a nice write up from us when do eventually ride off into the sunset, Boy Who Cried “Quit”. Just for that, we’re playing your fawning Messi interview.

Also on the airwaves last night: Osama Kamal sat down with Islamic scholar Al Habib Ali Al-Jifry (watch, runtime: 8:55) and discussed Twitter activity during the holy month with Twitter’s MENA Director of Media Partnerships, Kinda Ibrahim (watch, runtime: 7:42). Lamees had a lengthy segment on the Ramadan mosalsalat lineup (watch, runtime: 2:30:36) and beacon of health Amr Adib discussed fasting and chronic diseases with a group of doctors (watch, runtime: 37:09).

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