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Sunday, 17 October 2021

Social housing is the talk of the town

New housing project gets the talking heads’ attention: President Abdel Fattah El Sisi’s inauguration yesterday of a new social housing project in Sixth of October led the airwaves last night. Ala Mas’ouleety’s Ahmed Mousa spoke to Deputy Housing Minister Khaled Abbas, who said that the 13k new homes delivered yesterday are the latest batch of a 250k homes project of which 223k have been completed so far (watch, runtime: 4:01). The project aims to relocate residents of what the government has labeled “unsafe areas,” or parts of the slums in immediate danger, Abbas said. The government says that it has already moved most of the people in those areas into state-sponsored social housing, El Hekaya’s Amr Adib noted yesterday (watch, runtime: 5:32).

The project is the latest of a string of initiatives to relocate families from slums to more modern residential areas with subsidized payment terms. The latest was last month’s completion of the Sen El Agouz social housing project on the outskirts of Giza, which Al Hayah Al Youm’s Moustafa Sherdy recapped yesterday in a sit-down with Khaled Sedeek, who heads the state-led Informal Settlements Development Fund (watch, runtime: 3:46).

Meanwhile, Egyptian schools are suffering due to overpopulation, Education Minister Tarek Shawky told MBC Masr last week (watch, runtime: 2:41). The ministry’s budget has allowed it to build an additional 14k classrooms, only half the number of classrooms needed to accommodate the new number of students enrolling every year, according to Shawky. Over the past two years, some 1.5 mn new students have enrolled into Egyptian schools, he explained, adding that there is a major problem with the overcrowding of schools and the ministry is working on it.

Also on the airwaves last night: Violence in the streets of Beirut on Thursday that killed seven people was among the talking points on El Hekaya and Sada El Balad (watch, runtime: 2:00 and runtime: 7:28). Shooting broke out when armed men opened fire on a Hezbollah and Amal march calling for the removal of judges investigating last year’s Beirut port blast. The Shi’a Muslim groups accused the gunmen of belonging to the Christian Lebanese Forces, a long-time rival.

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