Asem al-Gazzar, housing minister's deputy sworn in on Wednesday before President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi as the new housing minister - Press photo
After five years during which he served as housing minister, Madbouli is no more keeping the post. CAIRO - 13 February 2019: Asem al-Gazzar, the housing minister's deputy,was sworn in on Wednesday, Feb. 13 before President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi as the new housing minister, succeeding Mostafa Madbouli, who has served in the post for five years in three consecutive cabinets.
Madbouli who took over as prime minister in June 2018, had also kept his old post apparently due to ongoing major housing projects that have started during his first tenure, as Sisi's first housing minister.
The president has met with Madbouli and Gazzar, according to presidential spokesman BassamRadi, where Sisi directed Gazzar to make the utmost efforts to finish the ongoing projects including developing unsafe areas on time.
Sisi also urged the continuous development of infrastructure projects and the provision of periodical maintenance for these projects, including sanitation projects, Radi added.
The Parliament approved appointing Gazzar as deputy minister of housing on January 14,2018, before he was granted the same post again in Madbouli's government which was formed in June 2018.
Gazzar served as the head of the General Authority for Urban Planning, succeeding Madbouli, during the term of Tarek Wafik, the former housing minister. He also directed the National Urban Observatory and served as the head of the technical committee to create strategic designs for new cities.
Furthermore, Gazzar was a member of the ministerial committee to develop the Suez Canal Axis, and a board member of the General Authority for Suez Canal Economic Zone, the National Organization for Urban Harmony, General Authority for Tourism Development, the National Center for Planning State Lands Usage (NCPSLU), and the Housing and Building National Research Center
Gazzar was a teacher at the Faculty of Regional and Urban Planning at Cairo University. He participated in preparing Egypt's scheme 2052, initiated by Madbouli.
He got his PhD from Cairo University in 2006 from the Urban Design Department. He also got high-level academic degrees from a number of universities including George Washington University, and Oxford Brookes University.
In July 2018, Madbouli and Gazzar witnessed the signing ceremony of two cooperation protocols between Cairo governorate and the New Urban Communities Authority.
The protocols were signed by former Cairo Governor Atef Abdel Hamid and Deputy Chairman of the NUCA Mazen Hassan, in the presence of other officials to develop El-Mawardi area, Al-Sayeda Zeinab.
Gazzar said that the two parties agreed on developing the unsafe El-Mawardi area,which stretches over an area of 3.35 feddans, referring that the protocol comes within the framework of the development project of Tal Al-Aqareb area in Al-Sayeda Zeinab.
Gazzar referred that Cairo governorate’s vision aims to restore the city's vital role as Egypt’s capital, and focuses on evacuating some areas in Cairo to be able to develop and use these areas in cultural and urban activities.
Keeping housing portfolio
Head of the Parliament’s Housing Committee Moataz Mahmoud said in June, that Madbouli kept his post as the housing minister in order to continue the national construction projects he started.
In an interview with the Egyptian “90 Minutes” program on Al-Mihwar, Mahmoud said the state has initiated a number of national projects worth billions of pounds in the past few years which are expected to be completed during the next year.
He explained that it was not certain that a new housing minister would adopt the same policy while resuming projects and would offer the same high efficiency as Madbouli.
On June 5, 2018, Egypt’s former Prime Minister Sherif Ismail submitted the resignation of his government only two days after President Sisi was officially sworn in as the head of state for a second term until 2022.
Selecting Madbouli wasn’t a surprise as he was Sisi’s first choice to lead the government last November when former Prime Minister Ismail had jetted off to Germany for a surgery. Ismail returned to his post later in January 2018.