From landowner to laborer


CAIRO: Salah Yassin from Kafr el-Sheikh takes the train to Cairo atthe dawn of September 28 each year to visit the late President Gamal Abdel Nasser’s grave and read the Fatiha, a Qu’ranic verse.

Yassin’s father received five acres of land according to the agricultural reform law issued by Abdel Nasser. The farmer, who is in his 5o’s, inherited those five acres from his father, and remembers with a sigh how he lived comfortably because of that land.

The land was later taken from him during Mubarak’s reign, so he became a laborer, earning 30 EGP ($4.3) daily.

“Those 30 EGP are for me, my wife and my children.” Yassin said.

Yassin never met with the late president, but he used to see him on TV and listen to him on the radio. He also remembers his father talking about Abdel Nasser with gratitude and passion, “If it was not for Nasser, we would have remained very poor,” Yassin said, quoting his deceased father.

Despite his living conditions, he is optimistic.

While he thinks that Abdel Nasser is irreplaceable, he sees well in General Abdel Fatah al-Sisi and hopes that Sisi might compensate Egyptians for what Mubarak and the Muslim Brotherhood did.

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