Al-Shater in Menoufia: We Stand in Solidarity with the Poor, the Afflicted, the Oppressed, and the Marginalized

Al-Shater in Menoufia: We Stand in Solidarity with the Poor, the Afflicted, the Oppressed, and the Marginalized

In a public conference at Abbassi Mosque square in Menoufia governorate (in Egypt’s Nile Delta) on Sunday, Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood (MB) and Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) presidential candidate Khairat Al-Shater asserted that the MB stands with the poor, stressing that social justice is among the essential aspects of the Renaissance Project.


Al-Shater asserted that dubious attempts to create a rift between the MB and the Egyptian people have failed. He also underscored that the MB sprang from the people; and that people know and trust the Brotherhood; and that MB Brothers have always shared their aspirations and pains, and strive to serve them through all possible means.


Guests at the conference included Menoufia MB chief Mohammad Abul Saud, Dean of Azhar University Faculty of Theology and Dawah (Islamic outreach) in Mansoura Dr. Abdul Rahman Al-Barr, MP Sabry Amer, Engineering Faculty Professor and member of the MB Guidance Bureau Mohamed Ali Bishr, Mostafa El-Ghoneimy, and a number of MB and FJP leaders.


In his speech, Al-Shater referred to his first conference held at Azhar University which supports the MB’s moderate Islamic approach as the basis for the Renaissance Project. He then addressed the Menoufian audience saying, "Today, I’m here with you, because the Renaissance Project needs hard-working people like the Menoufian people.


"Menoufia means ‘the house of gold’. The meaning of the name was later transformed to ‘the good land’. Menoufian history dates back to the Pharaohs, as Lady Hagar (the wife of Prophet Abraham) was from Menoufia", he added.


Al-Shater went on, explaining that the Menoufian people bravely faced up to Byzantine and French invasions; and that, today, they continue on their journey of giving by choosing Islamic Reference for their way of life, with the highest vote amongst Egypt’s governorates. He also pointed out that the Abbassia Mosque square was the launching point of January 25 revolution marches.


"Even though the former corrupt president was from Menoufia, the people of Menoufia have proved their belief in truth and justice and overthrew that corrupt tyrant and chose to join the march for freedom", Al-Shater said.


Al-Shater further described Menoufians as hardworking and distinguished people as evident in all work places, adding that their long history bears witness to their great effort, strife, productivity, patience, steadfastness, and vital experience despite the surrounding conditions of poverty, despotism and oppression of the ousted regime.


Al-Shater, then, stressed the importance of the Menoufian people in implementing the Renaissance Project during the upcoming phase, and in rebuilding the country, in loyalty to the martyrs and injured of the revolution.


Denying claims of MB intentions to pursue power or a political monopoly, he pointed that the Brotherhood’s history testifies to the group’s sacrifices for the homeland, including sacrifices and martyrs in the great Egyptian revolution, including the Menoufian young martyr Osama Allam.


Al-Shater explained that the regime that ruled Egypt for decades did not consist of Mubarak alone, but of several self-interest gangs and individuals in all institutions who strived to loot the country’s riches and plunder its resources.


Further, the MB’s former Deputy Chairman pointed out that the whole country’s budget was in the hands of a hundred of Mubarak’s chums and cronies, while most of the Egyptian people were left to live below the poverty line.


Moreover, Al-Shater emphasized that the MB and FJP ‘s goal is to establish a viable and just system of governance, chosen by the people to express their aspirations and serve them faithfully. He underlined the necessity of reforming the security system so that it would be at the service of the citizens rather than a tool for oppression.


Al-Shater further called for pursuing good governance based on Islamic reference in order to attain justice, security, stability, and development, believing that people possess the will to determine their destiny and future and believing that just rule will pave the way for development in all domains of life, for solutions to critical crises facing the country, for work opportunities to reduce unemployment and combat poverty, and for transforming the people from consumers to producers.


Al-Shater stressed that hard work is necessary for the systematic development of the country; and that the Renaissance Project is a comprehensive plan aiming at people development, first.


With regard to the MB’s change of stance by participating in the presidential race, Al-Shater said: "After we were prevented from forming a government and assuming executive authority, the Brotherhood’s relevant institutions decided to change course and field a contender for presidency, for the benefit of the homeland and the people.


“We will hold public conferences in all governorates and in every inch of Egypt, to gather ideas from all Egyptians for the project, in order to lay down a plan for building a modern Egypt that will be reflective of Egyptians’ aspirations."


Al-Shater pointed out that Menoufia’s population density is greater than any other Egyptian governorate by 20% and is ten times that of the country’s average density, hence the high unemployment rate.


"We are thinking of implementing our project through special committees to solve this problem, help the poor and meet their needs, increase the income of farmers, and modify the agricultural system so that it is more suited to their methods", Al-Shater said.


Furthermore, Al-Shater also emphasized the necessity of increasing the income level of the Egyptian citizen, away from corruption and bribery, of developing industry in Menoufia as small businesses can be provided anywhere to overcome poverty, and of production through honest management whether at the presidential, government, or local levels.


“This is bound to improve the conditions in Egypt generally, restore its leading role, help in attaining social harmony, and provide a civilized model of democratic transformation.


Affirming that the Renaissance Project is not only for the MB, but for all Egyptians, Al-Shater said that all the people should live honorable lives in which they enjoy all their rights, and that this will not happen without the hard work of all Egyptians without an exception.


Referring to 2011 as a decisive year for Egypt, with the people’s firm stance against corruption and despotism, Al-Shater pointed that main symbols of the oppressive apparatuses have been overthrown and detained in Tora prison where Muslim Brothers had for long been oppressed, which is a sign and a lesson for all despots and tyrants.


While Al-Shater called on the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) to learn from the lessons of history, he pointed that his eligibility to run for president is legally unquestionable, and promised to take all legal measures against his exclusion from the race.


Al-Shater further referred to the strongly-sponsored fierce media campaigns against Islamists, calling on the people to ignore them, and to ponder the words of renowned Imam ibn Hazm: "He who works in public service must give up part of his dignity for the sake of raising the banner of truth".


Moreover, Al-Shater advised all Egyptians to spread awareness about the reality of the situation in Egypt, and to expose the plots, schemes and scandals of counter-revolutionaries by talking to ten people each.


“My presence in this conference is to explain the Renaissance Project and to campaign for it, and I urge all Egyptian people: never give up or lose hope because of the plots of the corrupt regime holdovers.


“Do not listen to unethical and unprofessional newspapers which spread lies claiming that after the announcement of my exclusion on Saturday, people left my conference in Matareya.”


Al-Shater also confirmed that there are attempts to reproduce the former regime, underscoring the necessity for protecting and completing the revolution through unity and siding with the people’s wishes and avoiding slipping into side conflicts that only serve self-interest gangs whose aims are to maintain chaos in order to abort or undermine the revolution.


Explaining that if the resources and riches of the country are well utilized, as in the Renaissance Project, the whole society will be able to enjoy a dignified life, Al-Shater further stressed the importance of the role of youth as the energy that can power up this project.


Finally, Al-Shater reiterated the necessity of respecting and abiding by Islamic morals and principals in the presidential race between the different Islamist and national candidates, excluding those affiliated with the former regime ousted by the Egyptian people who will certainly not accept their return ever again.