CAIRO: A new museum, which features the history or irrigation in Egypt’s modern history, will be inaugurated in Aswan Sunday Jan. 10, announced Irrigation Minister Hossam Moghazy Monday.
Built on 146,000 square meters, “the Nile Museum comprises of two main buildings; the first features artifacts and manuscripts related to the construction of the 1902 Aswan Dam and the High Dam. It also sheds light on the history of Irrigation in Egypt during the Mohamed Ali Dynasty (1805-1952.),” Moghazy was quoted by Al Ahram.
The first building is built of rose granite quarried from Aswan with a total cost estimated at 82 million EGP ($10) million, said the minister.
The museum’s second building features the cultures and traditions of the peoples of the Nile Basin countries, Moghazy said, adding that the ministry allocated a corner at the museum to the Nile Basin states to showcase artifacts representing the Nile’s impact on their customs, heritage and daily life.
The ambassadors of 11 African states have been invited to attend the inauguration ceremony, according to Moghazy.
Farouk Farrag, head of the Tourism Promotion Authority in Aswan, told The Cairo Post the authority currently coordinates with the ministries of tourism and antiquities along with the Egyptian Travel Agents Association in order to include the new museum in travel itineraries.
In 1964, Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser and Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev marked the first stage of the High Dam’s construction when the course of the Nile was diverted. The dam was financed and built with Soviet help.
The High Dam was built to end floods and droughts in the unpredictable Nile, and to create hydroelectricity. The project was initiated in 1960 and inaugurated by Nasser’s successor, President Anwar Sadat in 1971.