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Egypt’s Parliamentary Elections Set to Commence in October

Egypt’s Parliamentary Elections Set to Commence in October

A scratched out photograph of former President Hosni Mubarak hangs at a polling station during the 2014 Presidential elections in Egypt.
A scratched out photograph of former President Hosni Mubarak hangs at a polling station during the 2014 Presidential elections in Egypt.

Egyptian voters will elect members of the House of Representatives over two phases, to be held in late October and late November, the Supreme Elections Commission (SEC) said on Sunday.

The first phase will run from October 18 to 19, SEC Head Judge Mahmoud Kamel Abbas said during a press conference aired live on state television. The second phase of the elections will run on November 22 and 23.

Voters abroad will start voting one day ahead of each phase, and will continue voting in parallel with the first day of voting inside Egypt.

SEC, which is overseeing the entire election process, announced the timetable for the elections during the conference.

The door for candidates to apply will open on September 1 and will remain open for 12 days.

Hours ahead of the conference, Interior Minister Magdi Abdel Ghaffar ordered ministry officials to work on “securing” citizens during the elections, state news agency MENA reported.

There will be committees tasked with monitoring media services’ coverage of the upcoming ballot. They were formed by SEC to view daily coverage of the elections, “monitor” and “analyse” it, in accordance with professional standards and “determine” violations.

If a “violation is proven,” SEC may take several courses of action, including preventing a media service from running any coverage of the elections for a period of time decided by SEC.

The parliamentary elections were originally scheduled to be held earlier this year, with the two phases set to be held in late March and late April.

They were, however, postponed when the the Supreme Constitutional Court decided against the constitutionality of an article in one of the laws regulating parliamentary elections in March.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi issued on August 1 two amended laws to govern the parliamentary elections; the political participation law and the parliamentary elections laws.

Once held, the parliamentary elections would mark the completion of the roadmap, which Sisi announced to the nation in July 2013, following the ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Mursi by the military after mass protests against his rule.

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Aswat Masriya is a Thomson Reuters Foundation-sponsored website that covers Egypt's transition to democracy. en.aswatmasriya.com

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