Posted by Kate Phizackerley on Monday, March 07, 2011

?There have been twists and turns in this story during the day with Antiquities re-absorbed into the Minstry of Culture or maybe the Minstry of Tourism: nobody seemed quite sure which.  Then a group of prominent Egyptian archaeologists lobbied hard and fast and have secured a commitment from the Prime Minister for the Antiquities Service as a separate entity, reporting directly to cabinet.

There is an election planned for Friday to elect a new Head of the SCA (cabinet minister)?  The seven names on the list are reported to be:

  1. Dr Abdel Halim Nur al Din
  2. Dr Ali Radwan
  3. Dr Sabri al Aziz
  4. Dr. Alaa Shahine
  5. Dr. Mamdouh Amr
  6. Dr Mamdouh Amaty 
  7. (?)

(My apologies if I have mis-spelt any names. I am been relying on a list of six names Sarah Parcak posted on Facebook together with an Arabic source.  I have tried to get them as accurate as I am able.)

I have struggled with reporting this story.  Much of it is only being covered in Arabic so I might have misunderstood, and I have yet to ascertain the composition of the electorate. There are also people pushing to have other candidates added to the list.  I know it has been a tough time for antiquities and the damage done to sites is certainly bad news, but in the long term a vibrant and independent Ministry for Antiquities might more than offset the present negatives, especially if the new Head of Antiquities has a strong mandate from his colleagues within SCA.

In the meantime, Dr Hawass reported on his blog yesterday that he continues in office until his successor is appointed.

Although Dr Hawass said that the Egyptian Museum expected to complete its inventory of missing objects on Sunday, no new list has been published.


Anonymous said...


Name #6 is Mamdouh eldamaty, the last director of the Cairo Museum but one.

Name # 7 is Dr. Hassan Selim, who is/was a curator at the Egyptian Museum.

However it seems highly unlikely that the SCA members will be allowed to elect their representative; if they can then all other civil servants will want to as well. But it's an interesting list of potential names nonetheless.

Kate Phizackerley said...

This seems to be just another rumour - maybe that is too strong. It's only an aspiration - but an aspiration in an environment where many aspirations have come true.

I just wish we had a name and he could start work!

Anonymous said...

The original plan was that there would be a combined Ministry of Culture and Antiquities
but protests have prevented this. The new Minister of Culture
will be Emad Abu Ghazi. The new Ministry of Antiquities (Hawass position) has been dissolved.
After protests by archaeologists, the SCA is no longer under
the jurisdiction of the culture ministry but rather that of the cabinet. The new secretary general of the SCA has yet to be officially
confirmed. He is likely to be Mohamed Abdel Maksoud, head of the SCA's Lower Egypt division.

Tuấn Trần Minh said...


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