Tuesday, May 5, 2009

The Pigs dumpsters Crisis

Some people in Egypt are refusing the Presidential decree to get rid of all the pigs in Egypt despite the majority of the people welcome it. Of course it seems that the majority of the Egyptians in the eyes of the world are crazy radical ignorant conservative elitists from different classes !!

Some people find it a golden opportunity to start the game of sectarian division and the silly talk of Copt oppression, well some actually love playing the role of the victim regardless of how dangerous this game. It is useless to enter with those people a debate because whatever you tell them they won’t believe you and do not believe you.  Of course if we were the strong Egypt like we used to be all those tongues would be silent and dare not to speak.

Other people who are not convinced with the decision began to search for reason to accuse the government of using the Swine flu as a plea to justify its fast decision to eliminate the pigs to hide their wicked evil business plan over the expense of the poor garbage collectors.

I respect those other people and their views. Our government for sure is not trustworthy at all but I am amazed that up till now we do not have a clear theory on why the government took this decision .

I read last week that the garbage collectors have told the reporters that the government wanted to get rid of them in order to steal their land for the sake of businessmen , those businessmen would buy that land to build fancy projects !!

May be this is one area but in another area or even governorate it is another issue. Mina Zackary aka Egyptian Watchman went to Qalyubia after the alert bloggers and reporters received from 2 days ago. I respect Mina’s report despite our obvious difference opinions regarding this matter yet we agree that it is not a matter of sectarian division nature.

Mina knew from the garbage collectors in Qalyubia that the government according to them took this decision and the other decision to demolish their houses for the sake the foreign garbage companies working in Egypt !!  Not to mention a local recycling garbage company owned by the Swairis family ,the richest Christian family in Egypt and that the Pope was collaborating with it. A diabolic conspiracy theory for sure but needed to be proved. This of course met with huge acceptance in the Egyptian blogsphere , the foreign business factor and the corrupted hated government plotting plus the corrupted marriage between businessmen and religion men against the poor people of Egypt.

Believe me I do no have anything against the garbage collectors on the contrary but there were always justification there in the pas since the entry of the H5N1 and the warnings that this dumpsters with pigs inside the cities are like health time bombs.

The government is always stupid for sure in dealing with the people sending its security forces to finish the matter , this is something well known to everyone and it happens on a daily basis.

But let’s assume that we are living in a real democratic country and have 100% free democratic elected government , Parliament and the President. That democratic elected parliament has agreed by majority to eliminate all pigs in Egypt and this decision is adopted by the government and the President accordingly , how it is going to be !!!??

Will You respect it as the wish of the majority wish as democracy implies or what !!??

Let’s assume something even much more important , the future of garbage collecting business in Egypt.

What if this democratic government decides to implement the garbage recycling eco-friendly system like the one abroad with factories and companies “not those foreign companies but national companies” , will you consider it unfair decision to organize the garbage collection and recycling taking in consideration that this decision means the loss of those people’s main job ??!!

We can’t have these dumpsters forever in this way for God Sake if we want to advance and please do not interpret my words as if I am supporting the current  government acts as it is a government does not want Egypt to advance in the first place.

If there is a fair democratic government it will be sure to compensate those people fair enough for their losses and even will be sure to employ them in those new factories I am dreaming about. There is no Egyptian I have met who travelled abroad and did not wish to have this clean recycling system in his/her country instead of our current garbage collection system.

If we want to advance with Egypt we can’t leave those people live like this and say that it is ok and fine in the first place and again please do not interpret my words as approval on how the government deal with those people now. I believe that the current government should transfer them to better real homes in better clean areas to live in. In fact I believe by the end of the crisis may be Gamal Mubarak or his mother will come as saviours and offer new homes in better areas for them , believe me they will ,they won’t waste this golden opportunity.

Do You know what is the real problem in our crisis here ??

It is the fact that we as a people have ignored the problems of the garbage collections and collectors for a very long time just like every problem in this country. We could have avoided all this debate from the start if  we forced our government to solve this problem, to make sure that the dumpsters were outside the cities and more important make sure that those humans working in this industry are living in real houses away from these dumpsters.

From the start the situation was wrong and catastrophic and because the government and also we left it like this it became bigger and bigger. When we tried to solve ,it was too late , in fact it was not a solution but rather partial decision.

Slaughtering the pigs for sure is not the end of the garbage collectors agony in Egypt , it is just part of the problem.

Solving this problem for once and for all needs a better democratic proactive government , just other problems in this country.


  1. The decision to slaughter the pigs was a mistake. It was not a rational decision based on scientific fact and will add to the poverty of those who depended on the pigs for a living.

  2. with my all respect it is based on scientific facts not related to the current strain H1N1, these people can be the first victims of deadly H5N1 if it were mutated in these dumpsters

  3. My Dear Zeinobia, You are making me work too hard! As a long ago retired senior citizen I object!!

    Never heard about Avian flu in the initial reports. http://features.csmonitor.com/globalnews/2009/05/04/egypts-slaughter-of-pigs-draws-criticism-as-misguided/

    I am all for improving the plight of the garbage collectors as you suggested but needlessly slaughtering a part of their livelihood was unnecessary and cruel. Frankly I still believe that an anti-pig bias OF some sort played a part in the decision.

  4. Hi Zeinobia,

    Although I don't agree with everything you've said, and I certainly don't agree with the pig cull, I really appreciate your comments on the "real problem" - the treatment of the zabaleen/garbage collectors. It is sad that it took this kind of story to draw attention to their poverty and poor living conditions, and I am appalled at the people who are blaming them for the living conditions of their pigs, when many of them don't live in much better conditions themselves.



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