Swiss ‘money pool’ goes on sale

Updated 04 December 2013

Swiss ‘money pool’ goes on sale

BASEL, Switzerland: Fancy taking a dip in a sea of Swiss francs, or scooping up fistfuls of coins? Your wildest dreams could come true thanks to a sale with a political edge.
Would-be buyers have a chance to snap up a century-old huge safe deposit vault containing eight million five centime coins, or 400,000 Swiss francs ($441,000).
On sale via JamesEdition, a Sweden-based online luxury clearing house that matches sellers and bidders for anything from real estate to private jets, the vault and its contents have attracted a string of confidential offers, organizer Che Wagner told AFP.
The coins were earlier this year dumped in front of the Swiss Parliament by Wagner and fellow campaigners seeking a minimum monthly government stipend of 2,500 Swiss francs for each of the country’s eight million inhabitants, regardless of age and income.
Measuring almost 45 square meters, the vault is in a former bank in the northern Swiss city of Basel.
The building houses the campaigners who, using the famed Swiss system of direct democracy, mustered enough signatures to push for a plebiscite on the minimum stipend within the next three years.
The vault currently belongs to a member of the referendum committee, and the potential sale price has not been revealed.
The campaigners are organizing the sale in order to fill their coffers for what is expected to be a tough referendum battle on the stipend issue.
“It’s going to be an interesting campaign, and we’ll need 10 million Swiss francs,” said Wagner, 25.
“But we’re not doing this for the money,” he insisted, adding that he hoped the vault’s buyer would open it to the public.
While critics dub the handout scheme far-fetched, the campaigners say it is high time for a radical rethink of how work and society function.
If it were to pass, the measure would cost an estimated 200 billion Swiss francs a year, which the campaigners say could be funded by a better share-out of social security, a reduction in salaries, and taxes.


Mo Salah criticized over GQ photoshoot

Updated 18 October 2019

Mo Salah criticized over GQ photoshoot

  • Most comments, especially in Egypt, focused on Salah being embraced by the model despite being a married Muslim man brought up in a conservative society
  • The controversy had people so distracted they didn’t — or wouldn’t — congratulate the Liverpool star on receiving GQ’s Man of the Year award for 2019

CAIRO: Egyptian footballer and Liverpool striker Mo Salah’s latest cover shoot has caused controversy, with people criticizing him for being embraced by a model and highlighting double standards in society.
Salah can be seen on the cover of GQ Middle East with former Victoria’s Secret Angel, Alessandra Ambrosio.
One version shows them standing back to back while the second, and the cause of the controversy, has Ambrosio embracing him from behind.
There is also a behind the scenes video where the stars can be seen laughing together.
Most comments, especially in Egypt, focused on Salah being embraced by the model despite being a married Muslim man brought up in a conservative society.


“Imagine if a married Muslim woman did this,” one Twitter user commented.
The controversy had people so distracted they didn’t — or wouldn’t — congratulate the Liverpool star on receiving GQ’s Man of the Year award for 2019.
And, after sharing the two covers on his social media accounts, Salah was hit with waves of angry fans shaming him for the pictures and questioning his morality.
“Shame on you as a Muslim,” one Instagram user commented.
Many of the comments were jokes regarding Salah’s marital life ending or being on the rocks. The footballer, who has tens of millions of fans around the world, has yet to address the backlash.


People were quick to compare Salah’s pictures to those of female Egyptian celebrities who have faced tougher responses to behavior considered immoral. Actress Rania Youssef risked a five-year jail sentence after wearing a dress to a red carpet event that revealed her legs and upper thighs.
Salah, 27, is no stranger to posting pictures of his life and his Instagram account is brimming with candid snaps. But the GQ scandal reveals his difficult balancing act of being Egyptian, Muslim and a global star with a huge following outside the Arab world.


Those defending the forward wondered why he was being criticized, arguing that he was no longer a local Egyptian celebrity but an international A-lister and that his photoshoot with Ambrosio was justified. 
It is not the first time the Egyptian star has been caught up in controversy, however. 
Last month he clashed with Egypt’s football federation after it was revealed the organization had not voted in FIFA awards in which Salah was a candidate. He also had a row last year with the federation over his image rights.
He made headlines for smiling and posing with Chechen strongman Ramzan Kadyrov as well as drawing fire for defending teammate Amr Warda, who was booted out of Egypt’s Africa Cup of Nations squad for the alleged sexual harassment of several women online.
It was reported that Salah’s intervention helped sway the Eygptian Football Association to reinstate Warda to the squad.