A video of a tuk tuk driver raging against the state has gone viral, racking up over five million views online and trending on social media since its release on Wednesday.
The video was originally aired on talk show “Wahid min al-Nas” (One of the People), on Al-Hayat channel. During an interview the unnamed driver said, “when you look at Egypt on TV it looks like Vienna, when you see it from the streets it looks like Somalia’s cousin.”
He added, “the people are not educated, the people are tired, the people are hungry.”
The footage shows him questioning how the state can have so many institutions — the military, Interior Ministry, Trade Ministry and Parliament — and yet people are still unable to find rice or sugar on the street. The driver insisted that before the presidential elections the people had these commodities. “Now what has happened?” he asked.
He also railed against the fact the Egypt receives huge sums of money from Saudi Arabia, but the people never see it.
“Shame on Egypt for doing this, how did we get to this state?” he asked, calling for justice and democracy in Egypt.
In addition to economic troubles, the unnamed driver asserted that one of the biggest problems in Egypt is the state of education. When the interviewer asked the driver what he graduated in, he replied “I graduated from tuk tuk.”
His answer spawned the hashtag #انا_خريج_توكتوك (I graduated from tuk tuk), which has been widely-shared on social media and was one of Egypt’s top trending hashtags on Thursday.
One user posted a similar video showing people rallying against the current economic situation, writing, “Do you doubt the tuk tuk driver? #therevolutioniscoming #Igraduatedfromtuktuk”
Another user tweeted, “All people agree with the phrase #Igraduatedfromtuktuk, these words summarize what 90 million Egyptians know, these words are overcoming fear, speaking out and not being afraid.”
Egypt has experienced a severe economic crisis in recent months. Prices have risen astronomically and during August annual inflation reached its highest point since 2008, at 16.4 percent, according to the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS). The agency attributed this to price hikes in commodities and services, particularly food and beverages (the latter has risen by over 20 percent). The implementation of Egypt’s value added tax law, approved in August, is expected to cause more inflationary pressure.
Much of this is due to Egypt’s ongoing currency crisis. The Egyptian pound continues to fall on the back market, this week falling to LE15 to the dollar, and many analysts predict that the devaluation of the pound is imminent.
As inflation continues to grow many analysts say that the poor will suffer the most from rising prices.