Egyptian authorities clamp down on ‘Sisi’s balls’
November 28, 2017
A great controversy and a wave of arrests took place in Egypt earlier this month because of a children’s toy called Clackers, which consists of two plastic spheres suspended on a string that bang against each other when swung.
When children dubbed this retro toy “Sisi’s balls” — a reference to President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi’s testicles — the Egyptian government launched an inspection campaign Nov. 8, followed by arrests of toy store owners throughout Egypt to stop them from selling the “offending” toy.
As a result, 1,403 toys were confiscated and 41 toy store owners were arrested and referred to the public prosecutor’s office for investigation, according to a statement issued by the Security Directorate.
The Interior Ministry also issued a statement explaining that the arrests were based on the ministry’s policy of maintaining security, order and public morals.
Clackers is a cheap plastic toy that has been sold for 5 Egyptian pounds ($0.30) since the beginning of the summer. The toy is popular among schoolchildren, especially in the villages, and yielded good profits for toy stores — until it roused the ire of the government. Owners of toy stores that sell Clackers now face arrest and have incurred financial losses due to the confiscation of the toys in stock.