Cairo: Egypt on Thursday named its first Christian woman governor as part of a massive reshuffle of the country’s provincial governors.

Manal Awwad Mikhail, 51, has been appointed as governor of the coastal province of Damietta, becoming Egypt’s second female governor, state media reported.

Last year, Nadia Abdou, a female engineer, was picked as governor of the Nile Delta province of Beheira.

In 2015, Mikhail served as deputy governor of Giza, a twin city of Cairo. In that post, she was in charge of revamping the city’s informal housing settlements.

A graduate of the veterinary science school, Mikhail earned a doctorate’s degree in medical sciences in 1999.

Over the past years, Egypt has seen several male governors from its minority Christians, who account for about 10 per cent of the country’s population of around 100 million.

On Thursday, President Abdul Fattah Al Sissi swore in Mikhail in her new job along with 20 other new governors. Six other governors have retained their posts in the major shake-up aimed at boosting public services in Egypt’s 27 provinces.

Following the swearing-in ceremony, Al Sissi met the governors and instructed them to work to raise living standards, come up with unconventional solutions to problems and combat corruption in their respective provinces, a presidential official said.

Two former provincial officials are being tried in separate graft cases on charges of taking bribes.