We were all glad that Mehleb’s government had stepped down, but our happiness had nothing to do with the man, whom we respect, and his appreciated efforts during a tough period and before he became Prime Minster, at a time when any sane person would have refused such a post. It has nothing to do with the recent corruption cases, although I believe there are mysteries behind them that need to be uncovered. Moreover, we should respect the man who endured a full year of attacks and sharp criticism, and voluntarily chose to relieve himself from such burdens. He might even have a more important role in the future.
We should not create a social prison around him and pursue him with unjustified sharp criticism. If we are the ones who asked for him, and if we are sure his hands are clean, then maybe these are his abilities, and maybe he didn’t have the luxury of resigning.
The baffling question is, why Sherif Ismail? Let us answer with more questions. Did he work in any field other than petroleum? The answer is no. His resume started at Mobil oil company and with the Ministry of Petroleum, passing through many companies, all in the same field.
The second question is, was he successful in managing the ministry? If the answer is yes, then we have to let him complete the path of success, especially in light of the new natural gas discovery, and the difficult period we are going through. This period requires a super minister who can manage the system with high efficiency, as mistakes would have a very high cost at this point. It is not necessary that someone who succeeds at one thing can succeed at anything, and Mehleb was clear example of that.
The third question is, are there any suspicions around him in the current corruption case? The answer is yes; even if he was honest and his hands are clean, the mere mention of his name puts him in an unenviable position, and criticisers will always find a means to distract him.
So, why don’t we leave the man in the area he manages efficiently, and look for someone else? This leads us to the final question, although I have many other questions. The question is, has Egypt run out of human resources who are able to steer the rudder of the country and are competent enough to do so? The answer is known of course, but apparently we have chosen to dress Egypt in the same old shabby dress; it is always the same old wardrobe. We are not looking for suitable and competent faces. I am not talking about the designated Prime Minister. But rather about the way he was chosen, as if Egypt does not want to change and be happier, as if Egypt is not seeking to please its people.
This also applies to the choices of the Prime Minister himself; we will not see a distinguished print in his choices. We will keep a lot of the same ministers and bring in more of the same former ministers, and perhaps call in two or three new faces. What is this absurdity that pervades all aspects of life in Egypt? Even if it is just an interim ministry until the election of the parliament, it still has to be on the level of responsibility for the present situation. We are not in a position that allows us the luxury of waiting and experimenting, or passing time until something we want happens. We are significantly behind, and this is not something we have the luxury for.
Mr. President, you are a risk taker by nature, since the moment you decided to stand by the side of the Egyptian street, to the moment you decided to become president, and what characterises you is that your risks are well studied. So why didn’t this happen now? Why haven’t you presented us with the youth of Egypt to run the country? Why did you settle for this change, that has failed to meet our aspirations?
We need an explanation and an answer to those who are wondering where the youth have gone. The youth, whom you said you will benefit from in managing Egypt. Where is the growth you promised we would feel in our pockets?
If Mehleb’s government reduced your popularity, I do not think the next one will add to it, and this is not what we want. We do not want to be governed by the minds that previously led the country to the decline we see now. We want new new, young minds that are full of life, so that we might stumble upon someone who can help you push Egypt forward, as Egypt does not deserve to be toyed with.
An Egyptian Citizen
Emad El Sayed is an Egyptian journalist and the Editor of Daily News Egypt