By SUE SUCHYTA
HEIGHTS – The City Council voted 3-2 to seat former Councilmember and City Treasurer Zouher Abdel-Hak to the body to fulfill the balance of Ray Muscat’s term following his health-motivated resignation.
Councilmembers Dave Abdallah, Mo Baydoun and Tom Wencel voted for current council candidate Abdel-Hak, while Nancy Bryer and Bob Constan favored current council candidate Ahmad Alkaabi. Councilmember Hassan Ahmad was absent from the meeting.
Prior to the vote, there was extensive debate between the Council and City Attorney Roger Farinha as to whether a simple majority vote of those present or a majority of the entire council would be needed to select a new councilmember. In the end, Abdallah went with a simple majority, rather than delay the appointment until a future meeting.
Abdel-Hak will fulfill Muscat’s term until the new city council is sworn in following the November general election. If Abdel-Hak is elected in November, he would continue to serve a full term.
He has been a resident of Dearborn Heights for 32 years and is married, with six children and four grandchildren. He has a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering and graduate diploma in business management from the American University in Cairo, Egypt.
Abdel-Hak was appointed to the Housing and the Zoning commissions by the late Mayor Daniel Paletko. He was appointed interim city treasurer in 2020 and to the council in 2021, by a council vote, to fill a vacancy.
As a current candidate for the council, his campaign priorities are public safety, flood mitigation and road repair.