(MENAFN) Minister of Transport Hesham Arafat took responsibility for the Beheira train collision which killed 15 people on Wednesday, admitting that "the railway system has not been developed in 60 years."
On Sunday, parliamentarians criticized Arafat, as well as the Egypt National Railways Authority, following another fatal Egyptian railway accident.
During the parliament's general session, Speaker of the House of Representatives Ali Abdelaal said that his country "must participate with the private sector like Arab and foreign countries did. If the state budget was totally used to reform the railway authority, it will not be enough [to modernize it].''
For his part, Arafat took responsibility saying "I confirm to you I am responsible." He noted that the ministry has prepared a plan to improve the country's trains, but admitted that progress has been slow.
"We have 900 train vehicles under development, but they have not been completed. Only their metal iron and tiles were changed."
"There is also a maintenance problem," he said, "we have engine transport vehicles which have been moving on the railroads since 1970, although they were meant to work only for 12 years," Al-Masry Al-Youm reported.