CAIRO: A well known Egyptian belly dancers has angered fans by defending a recent fuel price hike as part of austerity measures in the country, with her comments described as ‘insensitive’ to the poor.
Fifa Abdou was quoted earlier saying she supports the government’s decision to increase fuel and cooking gas prices, in measures designed to overhaul the country’s ailing economy.
Abdou clarified during a talk show aired Friday that her comments should not be seen offensive to average Egyptians, adding that she “feels the suffering of the poor.”
She also described living in Egypt as a blessing, saying: “If people traveled abroad, and witnessed the costly life expenses, they would understand that living in this country is a blessing,” as quoted by Masarwy.com.
She then said her comments on supporting the hiking fuel prices should not be seen as being against the poor.
“A poor person wouldn’t have a car to fuel, they would walk on their feet…” she said.
She then addressed those who are complaining against the price increase, saying: “those who don’t have money, do not fuel your cars.”
The new prices went into effect Saturday morning, the Ministry of Oil said in a statement.
Ninety-two octane gasoline increased from 5 Egyptian pounds to 6.75 pounds (from 28 cents to 38 cents) per liter, or about a 34-percent increase. Eighty octane gas increased from 3.65 to 5.5 pounds (from 20 to 31 cents) per liter, nearly a 50 percent increase.
Ninety-five octane gasoline increased from 6.6 to 7.75 pounds (from 37 to 43 cents), or nearly 17.5 percent.
The authorities also raised transportation fares by up to 20 percent on Saturday, according to state-run news agency MENA.
This is the third time the government has increased fuel prices since austerity measures were announced late 2015. The move is likely to send prices soaring further.
Source : Arab News