Ibrahim Mehleb, Housing Minister for the former government, declared to Al Ahram Newspaper that he has officially been appointed Prime Minister by interim president Adli Mansour.
Presidential elections are expected to take place within months and it is also expected that General Abdel Fattah El Sisi – the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces - will run for presidency, upon resignation from his current position.
The resignation of El Beblawi’s government came as a surprise as it was presumed that only minor changes would take place. However, it seems that the government was put under considerable pressure by huge labor protests.
El Beblawi did not give any reasons for his resignation, but officials told Reuters that it was a step prior to El Sisi’s announcement of running for presidency.
Mehleb, born in 1949, studied engineering at Cairo University and worked for the ‘Arab Contractors’ company until he reached the position of Chief Executive Officer.
Supporters of Mehleb say that he is dynamic and close to the lay people.
Oppositionists say he was a leader in the National Democratic Party (NDP), which was headed by Hosni Mubarak and was dissolved following the 25 January revolution.
The government’s resignation came at a time during which Egypt is witnessing several strikes in governmental departments and state-owned factories to demand better wages, reflecting anger over deteriorating living conditions caused by the economic crisis due to the political instability over the last three years.
The annual inflation rate in Egypt reached 11.6% last January, according to official data of the Central Bank of Egypt.