Egypt president's son drops job after furore

Last updated 09:59 18/02/2013

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Middle East

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One of Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi's sons withdrew from taking up a job with a firm affiliated to the civil aviation ministry on Sunday amid media accusations of nepotism.

The decision by Omar Mursi to forgo a human resources post at the Holding Company for Airports and Air Navigation showed the role of independent media in holding leaders to account in the new Egypt, following the uprising that toppled President Hosni Mubarak in 2011.

Mubarak was widely believed to have been grooming his own son, Gamal, a businessman, to succeed him. Gamal and his brother Alaa are in jail awaiting trial on charges of corruption and illegal land dealings.

Sources at the ministry said the monthly salary for Omar Mursi's position would not have exceeded 900 Egyptian pounds (NZ$158) but activists said it was unfair for the president's son, who graduated last year, to be given a government post when millions of citizens have been jobless for years.

Activists threatened on Sunday to protest outside the civil aviation ministry if the president's son took up his post.

On his Facebook page, Omar Mursi wrote: "I took a test for the position knowing I would be attacked and rumours and lies would be spread about me ... Yet I chose not to complete the paperwork to take up this position.

"The question remains 'How can I find a job in my dear country Egypt?' he said.

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- Reuters

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