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Wednesday, 30 September 2020

The death of Kuwait’s ruling emir topped the billing on last night’s talk shows, which also covered the rebound in tourism and looked ahead to the new academic year

The death of the Emir of Kuwait, Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Jaber Al Sabah, at the age of 91 dominated the airwaves last night. Talk shows highlighted President Abdel Fattah El Sisi’s social media post mourning the death of Al Sabah, and the declaration of three days of mourning. Al Hayah Al Youm’s Mohamed Sherdy (watch, runtime: 1:04), Masaa DMC’s Ramy Radwan (watch, runtime: 0:36), and Ala Mas’ouleety’s Ahmed Moussa (watch, runtime: 2:31) all had coverage. Yahduth Fi Misr’s Sherif Amer spoke to Kuwait’s ambassador in Cairo, Muhammad Saleh Al Thuwaikh, to offer his condolences (watch, runtime: 3:53).

The parliamentary elections are definitely not cancelled: Radwan covered the statement from Lasheen Ibrahim, the head of the National Election Authority, who denied claims circulating on social media that the Administrative Court had suspended next month’s parliamentary elections (watch, runtime: 4:35).

Looking ahead to the new academic year: Radwan spoke with Hossam Abd El Ghafar, the spokesperson for the Higher Education Ministry, who said that new national universities will reopen admissions from 1-3 October for students who weren’t able to pay tuition fees online due to technical problems. El Ghafar noted that a second round of electronic admission tests will be held on 4-5 October (watch, runtime: 8:16).

Red Sea tourism rebounds, if modestly: Moussa spoke by phone with the Red Sea Governor Amr Hanafi, who said that the number of tourists from Europe constituted about 20% of all tourists, and were mostly from Croatia, Serbia and the Netherlands. He said that the figure was reasonable given the circumstances of the pandemic, and said he looked forward to the return of German and Russian tourists. He stressed that the governorate has not seen any new covid-19 cases recently, and had become adept at administering PCR tests. Hanafi also touched on the latest reconciliations of building code violations in the governorate, saying some 25% of applicants had paid the settlement fees (watch, runtime: 21:09).

The electronic invoice: Osama Kamal interviewed Mahmoud Saqr the head of the Central Administration for Tax Authority Office Affairs, and Said Fouad, advisor to the head of the Tax Authority, about the new electronic invoicing system currently being trialled by the authority. Saqr said that six companies have been piloting the system since June, and will on-board 134 companies in mid-November. The companies are currently only issuing invoices business-to-business but the authority plans to expand the system to include business-to-consumer at a later stage (watch, runtime: 44:06).

New cities prepare water infrastructure for the winter: Radwan phoned Gamal Talaat, assistant to the deputy head of the New Urban Communities Authority, who said that the authority is clearing drainage networks, increasing the water collection points, and testing sanitation pumps ahead of the winter season. Talaat added that they increased the diameters of the sewage pipes, and strengthened and duplicated the existing lines. Radwan also called Sherif El Sherbiny, head of the Sixth of October City Authority, who said that they ran regular maintenance checks on the sewage networks to make sure they’re in proper condition (watch, runtime: 19:39).

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