2023: What I Learnt From My Trip To Egypt – Peter Obi

LP presidential candidate, Peter Obi, speaks during an interview on Channels Television’s Politics Today on July 25, 2022.

 

The presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi, has revealed his plans to apply the knowledge gathered from his trip to Egypt if elected as Nigeria’s President in 2023.

Obi had on June 14 embarked on a three-day trip to Egypt where he understudied the country’s power, education, planning and finance sectors.

He was hailed by his supporters for embarking on the trip to Egypt, while some others bashed the LP presidential candidate, saying it was too late to make such moves.

READ ALSO: Peter Obi Decries Worsening Insecurity, Backs Creation Of State Police

Appearing during an interview on Channels Television’s Politics Today, he shared some of the lessons shared from the visit to the North African country.

The presidential hopeful said South Africa and Egypt each produce over 50,000 megawatts of electricity, despite not being as populated as Nigeria.

According to him, Africa’s most populous country has the ability to generate, transmit and distribute 15,000 megawatts of electricity within a four-year period for any serious government.

“I go to where people have done the right thing to learn. Egypt, Vietnam and India have deployed the fastest electricity programme in the past five years,” he said.

“The experience of Egypt I decided to go and learn. I visited the power plant to see what they were able to do within those five years. I visited the company that executed the project, had a very useful meeting, and visited the Power Holding Company of Egypt and other agencies involved to learn what they did.

“Egypt moved their power generation, transmission and distribution from about 20,000 to over 55,000 (megawatt of electricity) today within five years. In a country like ours of 200 million people generating only about 4,000 megawatts when the second biggest economy in Africa – South Africa – is generating over 50,000 and Egypt is generating over 50,000.”

Electricity supply is a major challenge for Nigeria as it currently generates about 6,000 megawatts for the huge population of about 200 million people.

Egypt Court Calls For Live Broadcast Of Execution

A file photo of Egypt map.

 

An Egyptian court called Sunday for a legal amendment to allow the live broadcast of the execution of the killer of a female student, as a deterrent to frequent homicides.

In a highly publicised two-day trial, Mohamed Adel was found guilty last month of the “premeditated murder” of fellow university student Nayera Ashraf, who had rejected his advances, after he confessed to the crime in court.

The criminal court which sentenced Adel in Mansoura, 130 kilometres (80 miles) north of Cairo, called on the legislature to amend the law governing capital punishment, in order to allow the execution to be broadcast live.

In a letter to parliament, the court argued that “the broadcast, even of only part of the start of proceedings, could achieve the goal of deterrence, which was not achieved by broadcasting the sentencing itself”.

Egyptians shared their horror online when a video went viral in June appearing to show Ashraf being stabbed outside her university in Mansoura.

The maximum penalty for murder is death in Egypt, which carried out the world’s third highest number of executions in 2021, according to Amnesty International.

But capital punishment is rarely carried out in public or broadcast. In a rare exception, state television broadcast the execution of three men in 1998 who had murdered a woman and her two children in their Cairo home.

High-profile femicides have triggered widespread anger in Egypt in recent months.

In June, the murder of television presenter Shaimaa Gamal stirred controversy in the North African country.

Her husband, a senior judicial official, was arrested following a tip-off from an accomplice who confessed to taking part in the crime, according to the prosecution.

In March, a teenager was sentenced to five years in prison over the suicide of a schoolgirl after images of her were shared online.

Patriarchal legislation and conservative interpretations of Islam in Egypt have contributed to severely limiting women’s rights.

Nearly eight million Egyptian women were victims of violence committed by their partners or relatives, or by strangers in public spaces, according to a United Nations survey conducted in 2015.

-AFP

22 Dead, 33 Injured In Egypt Bus Crash: Authorities

(Representation Purpose only)

 

 

At least 22 people were killed and 33 injured in southern Egypt on Tuesday when the bus they were travelling in smashed into a parked truck, officials said.

The bus carrying around 45 passengers crashed into the stationary truck near the village of al-Barsha, some 300 kilometres (185 miles) south of the capital Cairo in al-Minya governorate.

“The truck was parked on the side of the road to change a tyre when it was hit from behind by the bus travelling from Sohag governorate to Cairo,” a statement from the governorate said.

Crashes are relatively common in Egypt, where many roads are in disrepair and traffic regulations frequently ignored.

Some 7,000 people died in road accidents in the country in 2020, according to official figures.

Man Tried Over Murder Of Student Who Refused Advances

A file photo of a court gavel.
A file photo of a court gavel.

 

A trial began Sunday for an Egyptian man accused of stabbing a woman to death in a public street after she rejected his advances – a case that has sparked widespread outrage.

A video went viral last week appearing to show the victim, identified as student Nayera Ashraf, being stabbed by a young man outside her university.

The crime has triggered widespread anger both in Egypt and beyond, having been followed a few days later by a similar incident in which Jordanian student Iman Irshaid was shot dead on a university campus.

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Social media users immediately drew comparisons between the two murders, decrying cases of femicide in the Arab world.

At the Mansoura Criminal Court, 130 kilometres (80 miles) north of Cairo, Mohamed Adel was accused of “premeditated murder”, after confessing to intentionally killing the victim, an AFP correspondent said.

Ashraf had previously reported the alleged perpetrator to the authorities, fearing that he would attack her, according to her father and witnesses.

The maximum penalty for murder is death in Egypt, which carried out the third highest number of executions in the world in 2021, according to Amnesty International.

“He stabbed her several times,” said the prosecution, which found “messages threatening to cut her throat” on the victim’s phone.

The next hearing is set for Tuesday, the defendant’s lawyer, Ahmed Hamad, told AFP.

In a rare occurrence among cases involving violence against women, authorities allowed television cameras to film the hearing on Sunday.

On social media, many Jordanian and Egyptian users called for the perpetrator to be sentenced to death, while others said men must “learn to take no for an answer”.

Egyptian preacher Mabrouk Attia sparked outrage last week after suggesting that the victim would not have met the same fate had she been veiled.

Nearly eight million Egyptian women were victims of violence committed by their partners or relatives, or by strangers in public spaces, according to a United Nations survey conducted in 2015.

Egypt Sack Coach Ehab Galal After Two Months

Ehab Galal

 

Ehab Galal was sacked as coach of the Egyptian national football team on Thursday, two months after he took over from Carlos Queiroz.

Egyptian Football Federation official Hazem Emam told a press conference in Cairo that the “negative results of the Egyptian coach precipitated his departure”.

“The names of a number of foreign coaches are being considered with a view to starting negotiations with them,” said Emam.

Egypt, without injured captain Mohamed Salah and several other key players, were beaten 2-0 by Ethiopia last Thursday in a 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier.

Egypt lost the last edition of the Cup of Nations to Senegal on penalties in the final in February and the following month fell to Senegal again in a shootout, this time in a 2022 World Cup play-off.

Former Pyramids and Zamalek coach Galal, 54, took over on April 12 after Portuguese Queiroz quit because he could not agree terms for a new contract.

Obi’s Egypt Trip Will Benefit Nigerians Whether He Is President Or Not- Spokesman

Peter Obi was the running mate to Atiku in the 2019 election.

 

Valentine Obienyem, the media adviser to Peter Obi, says the Labour Party presidential candidate’s trip to Egypt will benefit Nigerians. 

He said this in a statement issued on Thursday, a few days after the former Anambra governor explained that he embarked on the trip to understudy the North African country’s power sector. The move generated heated debates among Nigerians with critics faulting the trip.

But Obienyem says “the knowledge he (Obi) has gained will be useful to Nigeria weather he becomes president or not”.

The media aide noted that while Obi respects the opinion of others, “they should also permit us to tell them that Obi actually travelled specifically for the reason he mentioned”.

He re-echoed the former governor’s reason for the trip, wondering why such a decision triggered criticisms.

“On Tuesday, the 14th of June, 2022, Mr. Peter Obi informed Nigerians via his Twitter handle of his trip to Egypt, to understudy by what miracle the third biggest economy in Africa after South Africa and Nigeria moved their power generation from 20,000 Megawatts to over 40,000 megawatts in four years,” the statement added.

“Ironically, Nigeria has remained fixated on 4,000 megawatts since Adam. Why would such a useful trip set tongues wagging? I read many comments on Mr. Peter Obi’s trip.”

“Any sedulous listener to Obi would have heard him say that learning and leadership are interwoven: a leader must be humble at all times to learn from the high and the low to the extent of studying or learning from existing templates or countries that have done correctly what one’s own is not able to do. This is the full essence of the Egyptian trip,” he added.

Ethiopia Beat Salah-Less Egypt In AFCON Qualifier

Egypt were runners at the last AFCON. Photo: CAF

 

Egypt sorely missed injured captain Mohamed Salah as they slumped to a shock 2-0 defeat by Ethiopia on Thursday in 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifying.  

A strain ruled out the prolific Liverpool scorer after he defied his club last Sunday and played in a victory over Guinea despite not being fully fit.

Egypt lacked several other injured first choices, but were still expected to secure maximum Group D points in neutral Malawi against opponents 108 places lower in the world rankings.

But the quick Ethiopian forwards repeatedly troubled a slow Egyptian defence in the opening half and goals from Dawa Hotessa and captain Shemeles Bekele gave them a two-goal half-time advantage.

Egypt had more possession in the second half on a pitch badly cut up in places due to torrential pre-match rain.

Ethiopia were forced to play in Lilongwe because, like 16 other countries competing in qualifying, they do not have an international-standard stadium.

Coach Ehab Galal has only been in charge of Egypt for two matches after Portuguese Carlos Queiroz could not agree to terms for an extension of his contract.

Galal, who left Cairo club Pyramids to take over the Pharaohs, will now come under intense pressure as a year filled with disappointments for Egypt continues.

They lost the last Cup of Nations final to Senegal on penalties in February and one month later suffered a similar fate against the same team in a play-off to decide who went to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

Egypt needed 87 minutes to score the goal that beat Guinea in the opening round of 2023 Cup of Nations qualifying and the loss to Ethiopia left them bottom of the table.

The only consolation for Galal and his squad is that the other teams in the section — Ethiopia, Malawi, and Guinea — have also won and lost so each side has three points.

READ ALSO: [AFCON 2023] Super Eagles Labour To Beat Sierra Leone In Abuja

Naby Keita Winner

Guinea left it late to beat Malawi 1-0 in Conakry with Naby Keita, a Liverpool teammate of Salah, scoring in added time.

Nigeria ended a five-match winless run by coming from behind to beat Sierra Leone 2-1 in a Group A match played behind closed doors in Abuja because of crowd trouble in a World Cup play-off against Ghana.

All the goals came before half-time with Jonathan Morsay nodding the Leone Stars into an early lead, Alex Iwobi levelling and Victor Osimhen scoring what proved the match winner on 41 minutes.

Guinea-Bissau lead Nigeria on goal difference after hammering Sao Tome e Principe 5-1 in the Moroccan city of Agadir with Belgium-based Zinho Gano bagging a brace within eight minutes.

The brilliance of South Africa captain and goalkeeper Ronwen Williams could not prevent Qatar-bound Morocco winning a high-profile Group K clash 2-1 in Rabat.

It was the first match for both teams in a group reduced to three teams by the banning of Zimbabwe over government interference and Ayoub el Kaabi won it with a superb 87th-minute volley.

Fellow World Cup qualifiers Cameroon were also narrow winners, edging plucky minnows Burundi 1-0 in Tanzania though a goal from Karl Toko Ekambi.

Minnows Lesotho exceeded expectations by holding an Ivory Coast side stacked with Europe-based stars 0-0 in cold Soweto.

The Ivorians qualify automatically as 2023 hosts but are competing in Group H to gain competitive match practice.

This leaves rivals the Comoros, Lesotho and Zambia fighting for just one place at the finals and the Zambian Chipolopolo (Copper Bullets) lie second on head-to head records.

Mali scored twice in added time with 10 men to defeat South Sudan 3-1 and build a three-point lead over Congo Brazzaville and the Gambia in Group G.

AFP

Egypt File Fan Behaviour Complaint After Senegal Loss

Egypt’s players salute the audience after winning the 2022 Qatar World Cup African Qualifiers football match between Egypt and Senegal at Cairo International Stadium in the Egyptian capital on March 25, 2022. PHOTO: Khaled DESOUKI / AFP

 

The Egyptian Football Association (EFA) has filed an official complaint against its Senegalese counterpart for violent and “racist” fan behaviour, according to a statement released on Wednesday.

On Tuesday, the Pharaohs missed out on a place in the Qatar World Cup to Senegal at the Diamniadio Olympic Stadium in Dakar, which held a 50,000-strong crowd of Senegal supporters.

According to the EFA’s statement, “the Egyptian team was subjected to racism as crowds held up offensive banners in the stands, particularly against team captain Mohamed Salah”.

READ ALSO: Teenager Jailed For Racist Abuse Of Rashford After Euro 2020 Final

The complaint also cites players being pelted with water bottles and stones during their warm-up.

Photos released by the EFA show broken windows on the bus carrying the players, banners of insults against Salah, and Senegal supporters making profane gestures at the players.

Along with the official complaint, social media in Egypt has been flooded with photos of Liverpool striker Salah’s face obscured by a barrage of green laser pointers as he took a botched penalty.

Many Egyptian fans have blamed Salah’s wayward spot-kick on the lasers, though others have pointed out Egypt supporters often use the same tactic against visiting teams in Cairo.

AFP

Egypt Teen Jailed Over Online Shaming That Led To Girl’s Suicide

Basant Khaled, 17, died after swallowing poison on December 23. (Representational)

 

 

 

An Egyptian court has sentenced a teenager to five years in prison over the suicide of a schoolgirl after images of her were shared online, judicial sources said on Friday.

Basant Khaled, 17, who lived with her family in a village of northern Egypt, died after swallowing poison on December 23.

The 16-year-old accused was sentenced to two years in jail for statutory rape and three years for spreading photos and videos of the victim without her consent, the judicial sources told AFP.

The teenager, who was tried as a minor, had also faced accusations of “undermining family values” and online harassment, the sources added.

He was arrested in January after the case of internet shaming and loss of a young life stirred angry demands for accountability on social media in Egypt.

Five others accused over the case will be tried as adults in May.

A source in the prosecutor general’s office said at the time that Basant had been blackmailed after refusing to have a relationship with her alleged harassers.

The photos, posted widely on social media, were seen by her parents and classmates.

“Her face had been attached to the body of someone else,” her father Khaled Shalabi told local media after his daughter’s death. “She’s my daughter, I know her well and she’s not like that.”

In a desperate suicide note to her mother, shared with Egyptian media, Basant appealed for her understanding.

“Mum, you have to believe me, I’m not that girl. The images are fake, I don’t deserve what’s happening to me,” the teenager wrote.

In February, another teenager committed suicide under similar circumstances.

According to the prosecution, Heidi, 15, took her own life after being blackmailed with doctored images following a disagreement between her mother and their neighbours.

Teenager Jailed For Online Shaming That Led To Girl’s Suicide

A court gavel

 

An Egyptian court has sentenced a teenager to five years in prison over the suicide of a schoolgirl after images of her were shared online, judicial sources said on Friday.

Basant Khaled, 17, who lived with her family in a village of northern Egypt, died after swallowing poison on December 23.

The 16-year-old accused was sentenced to two years in jail for statutory rape and three years for spreading photos and videos of the victim without her consent, the judicial sources told AFP.

The teenager, who was tried as a minor, had also faced accusations of “undermining family values” and online harassment, the sources added.

He was arrested in January after the case of internet shaming and the loss of a young life stirred angry demands for accountability on social media in Egypt.

READ ALSO: 16 Malian Soldiers Killed In Separate Attacks – Army

Five others accused over the case will be tried as adults in May.

A source in the prosecutor general’s office said at the time that Basant had been blackmailed after refusing to have a relationship with her alleged harassers.

The photos, posted widely on social media, were seen by her parents and classmates.

“Her face had been attached to the body of someone else,” her father Khaled Shalabi told local media after his daughter’s death. “She’s my daughter, I know her well and she’s not like that.”

In a desperate suicide note to her mother, shared with Egyptian media, Basant appealed for her understanding.

“Mum, you have to believe me, I’m not that girl. The images are fake, I don’t deserve what’s happening to me,” the teenager wrote.

In February, another teenager committed suicide under similar circumstances.

According to the prosecution, Heidi, 15, took her own life after being blackmailed with doctored images following a disagreement between her mother and their neighbours.

AFP

Salah Vows Revenge As Egypt And Senegal Fight For World Cup Place

FILE PHOTO: Egypt’s forward Mohamed Salah walks past the trophy after loosing the Africa Cup of Nations (CAN) 2021 final football match between Senegal and Egypt at Stade d’Olembe in Yaounde on February 6, 2022. PHOTO: Kenzo TRIBOUILLARD / AFP

 

Egypt captain Mohamed Salah has vowed to avenge an Africa Cup of Nations final loss last month to Sadio Mane-inspired Senegal when they clash again on Friday in a 2022 World Cup play-off.

Failure in the continental final was particularly bitter for prolific Liverpool scorer Salah as he was also part of the Egyptian team that lost the 2017 Cup of Nations final against Cameroon.

Liverpool teammate Mane played a pivotal role in the first Cup of Nations triumph of Senegal — atoning for a penalty miss in regular time by converting the spot-kick that won the shoot-out.

READ ALSO: John Noble, Lookman Arrive Nigeria As Eagles Roster Swells To 25

Egypt host the first leg on Friday and Senegal have home advantage next Tuesday with the aggregate winners filling one of five places reserved for Africa at the 32-nation finals in Qatar.

Here, AFP Sport looks ahead to the five first legs with Cameroon seeking a record-extending eighth appearance by an African nation at the World Cup and Mali hoping to reach the finals for the first time.

 

Egypt v Senegal

Senegal coach Aliou Cisse says the Cup of Nations triumph is history and all that matters is securing a second straight World Cup appearance.

“Winning the Cup of Nations is not an end in itself because we share a common goal of playing at the World Cup again,” he told reporters.

With a ‘spine’ comprising Chelsea goalkeeper Edouard Mendy, Napoli centre-back Kalidou Koulibaly, PSG midfielder Idrissa Gueye and Mane, Senegal are well equipped to succeed.

Egypt welcome back star goalkeeper Mohamed el Shenawy, who missed the Cup of Nations final through injury, but they were the second best side in the African title decider and start as underdogs.

The Egyptian media reported Egypt captain Mohamed Salah telling his teammates after the penalty shoot-out defeat in Cameroon that “we meet them (Senegal) again next month and inshallah (God willing) we will take revenge”.

 

Ghana v Nigeria

Nigeria are favoured, but tradition suggests a close affair with each nation winning twice in previous World Cup qualifiers and four other meetings drawn.

Both fared poorly at the Cup of Nations with Ghana shock first-round casualties after losing to minnows Comoros and Nigeria making a timid last-16 departure against Tunisia.

Nigeria boast a stronger squad than they had in Cameroon with forwards Emmanuel Dennis, Odion Ighalo and Victor Osimhen now available, but injured midfielder Wilfred Ndidi misses out.

Ghana fired Serb coach Milovan Rajevac after the Cup of Nations debacle and brought in Otto Addo with former Newcastle and Brighton boss Chris Hughton lending assistance.

 

Cameroon v Algeria

Hosts Cameroon fired Portuguese Toni Conceicao after finishing third at the Cup of Nations and hired legend Rigobert Song on the orders of President Paul Biya.

Song has chosen most of the team eliminated by Egypt in the semi-finals and there will be much interest in how he treats Bayern Munich forward Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting.

Choupo-Moting was furious at the not making the starting line-up against the Pharaohs and teaming up with captain and leading Cup of Nations scorer Vincent Aboubakar and Karl Toko Ekambi.

Algeria suffered a disastrous Cup of Nations title defence, going out after the first round, and coach Djamel Belmadi has dumped 11 of the squad he took to Cameroon in January.

 

DR Congo v Morocco

The Democratic Republic of Congo are alone among the 10 contenders in not having the benefit of match practice at the Cup of Nations — they came third in a qualifying group and missed out.

It could be advantageous, though, as Morocco will not have recent footage of the Leopards, whose only previous World Cup appearance was in 1974 when the country was called Zaire.

However, it is no secret that Dieumerci Mbokani is the man Morocco must shackle after the 36-year-old scored four goals in qualifiers having been recalled after several years in the wilderness.

Cup of Nations quarter-finalists Morocco boast a star full-back in Ashraf Hakimi, but Chelsea winger Hakim Ziyech will be absent due to a fall-out with coach Vahid Halilhodzic.

 

Mali v Tunisia

Mali and Tunisia met at the Cup of Nations in Cameroon and a tale of two penalties ended with the Eagles from west Africa winning 1-0 after Ibrahima Kone scored and Wahbi Khazri missed.

More close encounters are likely with Mali hoping to create history, and deny Tunisia a sixth World Cup appearance.

A boost for Mali is the belated decision of France-born Everton midfielder Abdoulaye Doucoure to represent the country of his parents.

Tunisia, who fell to Burkina Faso in the Cup of Nations quarter-finals, have recalled forward Taha Yassine Khenissi after he completed a six-month doping ban.

AFP

Egypt Swears In First Coptic Christian To Head Top Court

A file photo of a court gavel.
A file photo of a court gavel.

 

Egypt’s first-ever Coptic Christian judge to head the country’s highest court was sworn in on Wednesday, an appointment called “historic” by rights activists.

Coptic Christians, the largest non-Muslim religious minority in the Middle East, make up roughly 10 to 15 percent of Egypt’s predominantly Sunni Muslim population of more than 100 million.

Judge Boulos Fahmy, 65, took the oath to head the Supreme Constitutional Court in a ceremony attended by the president.

READ ALSO: Salah’s Egypt Target Revenge In World Cup Play-Off After AFCON Defeat

“President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi witnessed this morning the swearing-in of Counselor Boulos Fahmy as head of the Supreme Constitutional Court,” the presidential spokesman said in a statement.

The Coptic community has long complained of discrimination, underrepresentation, and sidelining from senior posts in the judiciary, universities, the police, and the military.

Copts were targeted following the 2013 overthrow of Islamist President Mohamed Morsi in a series of sectarian attacks, particularly in remote and impoverished villages in southern Egypt.

The Egyptian lawyer’s union said Fahmy’s appointment followed the retirement of his predecessor, Saeed Mari, due to his “health condition”. Egyptian judges retire at 70.

In 2019, Sisi introduced major changes to the constitution, allowing him to appoint the heads of top courts.

Previously it was customary for judges to be appointed to top posts based on their seniority, with the president’s approval considered a formality.

Fahmy is the fourth most senior judge at the court, and Sisi named him to the post on Tuesday, according to the country’s official gazette.

Mushira Khattab, the head of Egypt’s National Council for Human Rights, called Fahmy’s appointment “historic”.

“Egypt is entering a new era in which the political leadership elevates civil rights and the principle of equal opportunities for all citizens, without any discrimination based on religion, gender, or any other reason,” she said.

Andre Zaki, the head of Egypt’s Evangelical community, said the country was “witnessing a new historic national stage.”

AFP