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

Turkey's Controversial Reform Bill Giving Investors Jitters

Homeland security reform bill will give police new powers in search, seizure, detention and arrests, while restricting the rights of suspects, their attorneys More

Audio Slideshow In Kenyan Prison, Good Grades Are Path to Freedom

Some inmates who get high marks could see their sentences commuted to non-custodial status More

'Rumble in the Jungle' Turns 40

'The Champ' knocked Foreman out to regain crown he had lost 7 years earlier when US government accused him of draft-dodging and boxing officials revoked his license 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.
Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisiai
X
Henry Ridgwell
October 30, 2014 11:39 PM
Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisia

Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Africa Tells its Story Through Fashion

In Africa, Fashion Week is a riot of colors, shapes, patterns and fabrics - against the backdrop of its ongoing struggle between nature and its fast-growing urban edge. How do these ideas translate into needle and thread? VOA’s Anita Powell visited this year’s Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Africa in Johannesburg to find out.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.

All About America

AppleAndroid