Egypt appoints first opposition member to govt post

CAIRO: Egypt has appointed a member of the liberal opposition Wafd party as tourism minister in an unprecedented move, state news agency MENA said on Sunday.Mounir Abdel Nour, Secretary-General of the Wafd party, has accepted the position in Egypt’s interim government, MENA said.“Accepting the position is a national duty to push for change in the right direction,” MENA quoted Abdel Nour as saying to the Mehwar television channel.Abdel Nour called on Egypt’s next elected president to change the country’s constitution, which he said was outdated, MENA said. Veteran leader Hosni Mubarak was toppled in a popular uprising on Feb. 11 and handed power to the army, which has vowed to restore civilian rule with swift elections.Wafd has traditionally been the bastion of liberal democrats in Egypt, but is seen as having been co-opted by Mubarak’s government in recent years.MENA said the position of deputy Prime Minister had been filled by Yehia El Gamal.The information ministry had been scrapped, it added. The position of information minister had been held by Anas Fiki who is now under investigation. Fikki has been widely criticised by anti-government protesters for what they said was biased state media coverage of the protests.The agency said Mohamed El Sawy has been appointed culture minister. El Sawy owns a popular cultural centre in Cairo.MP Georgette Kalini has been named immigration minister, Ahmed Gamal El Din minister of education and higher education, and Omar Salama scientific research minister – Khaleejnews