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Mohamed Salah donates tonnes of food to home village amid COVID-19 pandemic

Mohamed Salah of Liverpool poses for a photo after he was named best player in the tournament during the cup ceremony at the end of the FIFA Club World Cup Qatar 2019 Final match between Liverpool FC and CR Flamengo at Khalifa International Stadium in Doha, Qatar on 21 December 2019. [Mohammed Dabbous - Anadolu Agency]
Mohamed Salah of Liverpool poses for a photo after he was named best player in the tournament during the cup ceremony at the end of the FIFA Club World Cup Qatar 2019 Final match between Liverpool FC and CR Flamengo at Khalifa International Stadium in Doha, Qatar on 21 December 2019. [Mohammed Dabbous - Anadolu Agency]

Mohamed Salah has posted a video of himself working out at home as the Premier League said it hopes to resume training on 11 May and for matches to start during the second week of June.

The pictures come after the Liverpool star donated thousands of tonnes of meat and food to his home village of Nagrig in Gharbiya Governorate in Egypt amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

The donations aim to help families affected by COVID-19. Thousands of informal workers have been out of work since the nationwide curfew and other restrictions were brought in by the government and many say they have not been compensated.

The footballer’s father, Salah Ghaly, has called on residents of Nagrig village to avoid large gatherings and to adhere to official health guidance.

Over the past several weeks photographs have circulated online of Egyptians crowded together at markets, press conferences and on the metro, despite calls to abide by social distancing. There is no official lockdown in place during the day, only a curfew at night from 8pm to 6am.

READ: Number of coronavirus cases in Egypt passes 3,000

Nagrig has been sanitised and masks have been distributed among the residents in a bid to keep the virus at bay. Ghaly told Al-Masry Al-Youm that two calves will be slaughtered and the meat handed out in the surrounding villages.

Salah has donated to his home village several times including giving several acres of land for the construction of a sewage treatment plant so that residents have access to clean drinking water.

In 2018 he gave $57,000 to Bassioun General Hospital and last year he donated $3 million to Egypt’s National Cancer Institute.

Since the beginning of the coronavirus crisis, years of underfunding of Egypt’s health service has been laid bare, with doctors regularly complaining about not only the lack of PPE, but also that they have not been paid promised bonuses.

The cancer institute is one of the hospitals that has been most affected. At the beginning of this month at least 17 medics tested positive and the institute was closed for three days so that it could be sterilised.

Management are currently under investigation by Cairo University amid claims that they threatened to replace staff members who wanted to take time off in fear of the virus. They have been accused of lacking transparency in dealing with the pandemic.

Earlier this year Salah was named the first ambassador for the UN Instant Network Schools programme which enables young refugees access to online education.

READ: COVID-19 is exacerbating neo-colonialism, including in Egypt

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