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AL MASRY AL YOUM, MASRAWY (Egypt)

Worldcrunch

CAIRO – Social networks bristled with rage last week when city workers in the capital began painting over graffiti near Tahrir Square, including some iconic images and writings commemorating the 2011 Revolution.

Now Cairo’s mayor Osama Kamel has conceded that the clean-up of the walls of Mohamed Mahmoud Street was a simple "mistake."

Kamel, whose position is also commonly referred to as governor of Cairo, explained over the weekend that orders were given by the government to "repaint the walls on which there are words or sentences violating the law or traditions." Cairo daily Al Masry Al Youm reported that Kamel said that the workers in charge of repainting the walls were unaware of the cultural importance of the graffiti along Mohamed Mahmoud Street.

The mayor’s declaration was intended to clarify that there were no political intentions behind this act that outraged many Egyptians. Mohamed Mahmoud Street, which is one of the streets leading to Tahrir square, became a symbol of the uprising a few months after the toppling of the Mubarak regime. It was then after protesters had returned to the streets asking the army to hand the power to a civil authority that a violent army crackdown led to the death of hundreds of demonstrators -- and many of the fiercest confrontations took place along Mohamed Mahmoud Street, which his since come to be known as "Martyrs' Street."

More generally, graffiti depicting the events and martyrs of the revolution has come to be seen as one of the new ways youth learned to express themselves after January 25th. Egyptian Prime Minister Hisham Kandil also criticized the city workers who painted over these graffiti commemorating the revolution, reported Masrawy. He called on painters and artists to get out and transform Tahrir Square and surrounding streets into a pilgrimage spot to revive the spirit of the revolution through graffiti.

On Facebook, blaming it all on workers did not seem to calm anyone down. As soon as the news was posted on Facebook, many hit the streets re-painting the faces of the martyrs and revolution slogans. Many also described the government as being as cowardly as the old regime for fearing the power of popular art.

See more photos from Facebook group: HERE

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Economy

In Uganda, Having A "Rolex" Is About Not Going Hungry

Experts fear the higher food prices resulting from the conflict in Ukraine could jeopardize the health of many Ugandans. Take a look at this ritzy-named simple dish.

Zziwa Fred, a street vendor who runs two fast-food businesses in central Uganda, rolls a freshly prepared chapati known as a Rolex.

Nakisanze Segawa

WAKISO — Godfrey Kizito takes a break from his busy shoe repair shop every day so he can enjoy his favorite snack, a vegetable and egg omelet rolled in a freshly prepared chapati known as a Rolex. But for the past few weeks, this daily ritual has given him neither the satisfaction nor the sustenance he is used to consuming. Kizito says this much-needed staple has shrunk in size.

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Most streets and markets in Uganda have at least one vendor firing up a hot plate ready to cook the Rolex, short for rolled eggs — which usually comes with tomatoes, cabbage and onion and is priced anywhere from 1,000 to 2,000 Ugandan shillings (28 to 57 cents). Street vendor Farouk Kiyaga says many of his customers share Kizito’s disappointment over the dwindling size of Uganda’s most popular street food, but Kiyaga is struggling with the rising cost of wheat and cooking oil.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has halted exports out of the two countries, which account for about 26% of wheat exports globally and about 80% of the world’s exports of sunflower oil, pushing prices to an all-time high, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization, a United Nations agency. Not only oil and wheat are affected. Prices of the most consumed foods worldwide, such as meat, grains and dairy products, hit their highest levels ever in March, making a nutritious meal even harder to buy for those who already struggle to feed themselves and their families. The U.N. organization warns the conflict could lead to as many as 13.1 million more people going hungry between 2022 and 2026.

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