Egypt’s cabinet resigns in wake of corruption saga

Egypt’s cabinet resigns in wake of corruption saga
The Egyptian government resigned on Saturday, days after one of its members was arrested for alleged corruption.

State television said that Prime Minister Ibrahim Mehleb presented the government’s resignation to President Abdel-Fattah al-Sissi, who accepted it and asked the government to continue doing its duty until a new one is formed.

Later on Saturday, al-Sissi tasked the current oil minister, Sherif Ismail, with forming the new government, according to the broadcaster.

Ismail has one week to set up his government which will remain in office until the election of new parliament later this year.

On Monday, Agriculture Minister Salah Helal and some aides were arrested for what local media described as the biggest corruption case to be uncovered since al-Sissi took office more than a year ago.

Helal is accused of using his power to cover up the seizure of state-owned land by a businessman. Mehleb’s government, which was formed in March, has come under media criticism in recent months for alleged incompetence.

Earlier last week the minister for agriculture was arrested for accusations of corruption. Some reports indicated that several ministers could be involved.

The timing of the resignation raised many questions, as the new cabinet should be dissolved after three months.

Adel EL Mahrouky reports

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