Sunday, 26 May, 2019

Egypt elections: El-Sisi officially wins 2nd term with 97% of votes

Sinai 2018 Egyptian Army during"operation sinai 2018
Ginger Lawrence | 03 April, 2018, 03:13

Disillusioned by the limited range of candidates, over a million Egyptian voters spoiled their ballots, with some of them casting their vote for Salah, the Economist reported.

Egyptian presidential candidate Moussa Mostafa Moussa arrives at a polling station to register before casting his vote at a polling station in the capital Cairo's central Abdin neighbourhood on March 26, 2018 on the first day of voting for the 2018 presidential elections.

Sisi's serious rivals this time round had withdrawn from the race, been sidelined or detained.

He promised "to continue my oath to be loyal in my work, not sparing any effort in order to advance our nation".

"I only had Egypt in mind", Mr Moussa said.

Lauding the "strategic partnership" between their countries, the White House made no mention of doubts about the fairness of the vote, in which Sisi won 97 percent of valid ballots cast.

"The United States values its strong partnership with Egypt and will continue to work to advance our shared objectives".

The State Department earlier noted 'reports of constraints on freedoms of expression and association in the run-up to the elections'.

Last month, Trump came under intense criticism from lawmakers after saying he congratulated Putin on his win at the polls.

El-Sissi began his rule after leading a military coup in 2013 against then-President Mohamed Morsi.

N.Korean leader meets International Olympic Committee president
The two men also held discussions about the development of sport in the North and attended a women's football match. Trump is then due to meet Kim before the end of May for talks on Pyongyang's denuclearisation.

Election chief Ibrahim was effusive about the vote regardless of the perceived lack of competition and the low attendance.

"The election was an epic of love dedicated to Egypt", said Lasheen Ibrahim, the head of the election commission, who announced the official results.

The forward became a national hero in Egypt after he led his country to qualification for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, scoring a dramatic last-second penalty kick against Congo to prompt scenes of euphoria and tearful jubilation at the Borg el Arab Stadium in Alexandria, and across Egypt.

The election commission said the vote was free and fair as it gave the results in a televised announcement on Monday.

There were no presidential debates and Sissi himself did not appear at any official campaign events, although he spoke at a number of ceremonies.

Thousands of Islamists and secular activists have been arrested in Egypt since Morsi's ouster, on charges of inciting violence or holding unauthorized street protests.

In February Sisi ordered the armed forces launched their most comprehensive campaign yet to end the five-year-old jihadist insurgency.

Human rights groups have frequently slammed al-Sisi for his crackdown on protesters and the Egyptian news media.

Critics say former general Sisi's popularity has eroded amid tough economic reforms, which have left most Egyptians worse off, and also an unprecedented crackdown on dissent.