Imagine if you were Russian and you woke up one day to discover that due to Moscow’s insufferable traffic problems, the Kremlin decided to build not a new mass transport system, but a new capital city altogether. Or, if you were Chinese, and because of Beijing’s endemic pollution problem, the Central Committee of the Communist Party, rather than pass new laws to limit carbon emissions and limit the number of passenger cars, has decided instead to move the capital to a new hitherto unknown location. Or if were Italian, that your government decided to abandon Rome and locate the capital to the coast to be close to maritime routes.
And imagine in all these cases that your government did this without informing you of its intentions, let alone consult you as a resident of any of these ancient cities or as a citizen of any of these countries.
This is exactly what the Egyptian government did today. In a dramatic move, and to showcase its future plans, the government suddenly unveiled a plan to build a new administrative and economic capital of Egypt some fifty kilometers to the east of its millennia-old city, Cairo.
We, Cairenes and Egyptians, were not informed, let alone consulted about this move.