Daqahlia’s poor scramble for Ramadan bags

Daqahlia–Around 6000 Egyptians have been gathered in front of Mansoura Stadium since yesterday morning, waiting for their share of food supply bags which the governorate gives to the needy before the month of Ramadan, which this year will begin on Wednesday.

Ten people were reported to have fainted due to the scorching heat, while five others suffered scratches and bruises from scrambles and stampedes. Ambulances carried three women and one man to Mansoura’s International Hospital for treatment.

Those waiting also engaged in scuffles with security officers who were attempting to control the crowds and prevent attempts to break through the stadium's gates. Some eyewitnesses said one security officer beat a man to force him away from the stadium.

“The government humiliates us every year,” said Um Mohamed al-Sayyed, one of the “Ramadan bag” recipients. “We wait from 6 AM to 5 PM under the sun’s burning rays to receive the bag, which contains just one bag of sugar, oil, rice and macaroni, in addition to one kilo of dates and half a kilo of raisins."

Mohamed el-Wakil, another recipient, said: “In the past, the government used to distribute these supplies at each department among the offices of the Ministry of Social Solidarity, and we used to head to these offices and receive the bags there, preserving our dignity. But three years ago, the government started to give out the bags at the stadium.”

Governor Samir Seif ordered that the stadium’s gates be opened so citizens could wait inside the statidum for the supplies, scheduled to be distributed starting at 12 noon.

Translated from the Arabic Edition.

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