News / Africa

Egypt to Vote in Parliamentary Poll Amidst Uncertainty

An Egyptian man rests on a fence in Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt, Sunday, Nov. 27, 2011. Egypt's activists are staging a massive protest in Cairo's Tahrir Square to press demands for the country's military rulers to step down. The Sunday rally, dubbed "L
An Egyptian man rests on a fence in Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt, Sunday, Nov. 27, 2011. Egypt's activists are staging a massive protest in Cairo's Tahrir Square to press demands for the country's military rulers to step down. The Sunday rally, dubbed "L

Multimedia

Audio
  • Clottey interview with political analyst Gamal Nkrumah, who is also an editor of Al-Ahram newspaper in Egypt

Peter Clottey

An Egyptian political analyst says there are security concerns as anti-government protesters demand the formation of an interim civilian government ahead of Monday’s legislative election.

Gamal Nkrumah, who is an editor of Al-Ahram newspaper in Egypt, says while the military enjoys support from an older generation, it has little or none from young people who want the leadership to immediately relinquish power.

“The general view in the country is confusion,” said Nkrumah. “There is a large number of younger people who are very anti-military [but] by and large the majority over 40 are for the military because since the revolution, there has been a near breakdown in law and order in many parts of the country.”

A number of the revolutionary youth groups leading the protests have proposed that Nobel Prize laureate Mohamed ElBaradei head an interim civilian administration with deputies from across the political spectrum. They want the proposed body to replace the military leadership in supervising Egypt's transition to democracy.

But the head of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces Mohamed Tantawi warns of “extremely grave” consequences if the country's current political turmoil does not end quickly. He said the ruling military council “will not allow troublemakers to meddle” in Monday’s parliamentary vote.

Many Egyptians are expressing security concern about the polls. Nkrumah underscored the need to ensure voters are protected during the election.

“It’s an uncertain situation. A lot of the police and armed forces and the various security organizations in the country are stuck in Tahrir Square, and that leaves few policemen and army security men to police the different polling stations,” said Nkrumah. “A lot of Egyptians will tell you we are going to cast our votes, but we are uncertain as to if violence will erupt, in and around the polling stations, but we are going, nevertheless.”

There is a “hefty” fine for citizens who fail to vote. “The very wealthy might afford to pay the fine and not to risk their lives by going to the various polling stations. However, the vast majority of Egyptians cannot afford this fine.”

Observers see Monday’s vote as the first free fair and transparently organized vote in a multiparty system in decades. Citizens abroad can vote in Egypt’s embassies and consulates around the world.

Nkrumah said there seems to be a mix-up about the success of the uprising which some analysts blame for Egypt’s current economic challenges.

“A lot of people feel that the revolutionary activity, the taste of freedom might be very seductive to the young, however that economically, the country is in ruins because of the protests in Tahrir Square and the revolution,” said Nkrumah.

You May Like

Multimedia Social Media Documenting, Not Driving, Hong Kong Protests

Unlike Arab Spring uprisings, pro-democracy protestors in Hong Kong aren't relying on Twitter and Facebook to organize, but social media still plays a role More

Analysis: Occupy Central Not Exactly Hong Kong’s Tiananmen

VOA's former Hong Kong, Beijing correspondent compares and contrasts 1989 Tiananmen Square protest with what is now happening in Hong Kong More

Bambari Hospital a Lone Place of Help in Violence-Plagued CAR

Only establishment still functioning in CAR's second city is main hospital More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
The Legacy of Jimmy Carter: The Preacher from Plainsi
X
October 01, 2014 10:45 AM
It is common in the United States to see tourists flock to sites associated with America's presidents. Some are privately owned and others are run by the National Park Service or the National Archives -- but most have helped draw business and people into the towns and cities where they are located. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there is one particular presidential hometown that is unique in what it has to offer those who make the trip.
Video

Video The Legacy of Jimmy Carter: The Preacher from Plains

It is common in the United States to see tourists flock to sites associated with America's presidents. Some are privately owned and others are run by the National Park Service or the National Archives -- but most have helped draw business and people into the towns and cities where they are located. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there is one particular presidential hometown that is unique in what it has to offer those who make the trip.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests Draw New Supporters on National Holiday

On the 65th anniversary of the founding of Communist China, Hong Kong protesters are hoping to stage the largest pro-democracy demonstration since the 1989 Tiananmen protests. VOA's Brian Padden visited one of the protest sites mid-day, when the atmosphere was calm and where the supporters were enthusiastic about joining what they are calling the umbrella revolution.
Video

Video India's PM Continues First US Visit

India's prime minister is on his first visit to Washington, to strengthen political and economic ties between the world's oldest and the world biggest democracies. He came to the U.S. capital from New York, the first stop on his five-day visit to the country that denied him an entry visa in the past. From Washington, Zlatica Hoke reports Modi seemed most focused on attracting foreign investment and trade to increase job opportunities for his people.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid