News / Middle East

Egypt's Sissi Crushes at Polls, Turnout Questioned

Egypt's Sissi Crushes at Polls, Turnout Questionedi
X
May 29, 2014 10:55 PM
Egyptian officials say preliminary results give former Egyptian army chief Abdel Fattah el-Sissi a sweeping victory in his presidential bid against Hamdeen Sabahi. But as VOA’s Elizabeth Arrott reports from Cairo, the vote has raised many questions about a Sissi presidency.
Elizabeth Arrott
Egyptian officials say preliminary results give former Egyptian army chief Abdel Fattah el-Sissi a sweeping victory in his presidential bid against Hamdeen Sabahi.  But, the vote has raised many questions about a Sissi presidency.

Small crowds Thursday celebrated the early results of Egypt’s presidential election, which give former army chief Abdel Fattah el-Sissi a crushing lead over his sole competitor.
 
Given a crackdown on opposition forces, few questioned an early tally showing Sissi with more than 90 percent of the vote.  
 
How many people voted is another matter.  Initial turnout was so low the government added an extra day of voting and threatened non-voters with fines.  Officials said participation jumped Wednesday, although many polls that third day were empty.
 
Despite cries of foul play, and little independent monitoring of the vote count, Sissi supporters came to his defense.

“Thank God these elections were legitimate," said Cairo voter Mohamed Mahmoud. "No oil or sugar were given out.  No money was given out.  No forging of the ballots occurred.  These elections are legitimate.”

Sissi had gained support from many weary of three years of post-revolution upheaval.  Among those yearning for some sense of calm are many of Egypt’s minority Christians, who had feared the influence of the Muslim Brotherhood. Sissi helped depose its member, President Mohammed Morsi, last year.

“We always pray for that.  The church always prays for the security and the stability of the country,” said Sister Myriam, a Roman Catholic nun.
 
But Sissi has not only his political nemesis, the Brotherhood, to worry about.
 
Egypt’s economy is in tatters. Patience is wearing thin. And harder times with potential subsidy cuts loom.  Even supporters voice concern about the future.
 
“This difficult phase is Sissi's phase," said Cairo resident, Mohshen Atteya. "It is a building-Egypt phase. A social justice phase. A phase where we have to look at the poor and misfortunate of Egypt, the people who live in graveyards. Sissi has to care for the impoverished of Egypt."

But with new doubts about the breadth of Sissi’s support, and a possible backlash about the vote count, Egypt’s next president may face great challenges in rallying Egyptians for the sacrifices he says lie ahead.  
 
Final results are expected early next week.

You May Like

Nigeria Incumbent in Tight Spot as Poll Nears

Muhammadu Buhari is running a strong challenge to Goodluck Jonathan, amid a faltering economy and Boko Haram security worries More

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo tells VOA that despite her fame, life is still a struggle as she waits for government's promise of support to arrive More

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

At least seven different indigenous groups in Ratanakiri depend mainly on forest products for their survival, say they face loss of their land, traditional way of life More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Nor from: EU
May 30, 2014 1:46 AM
just love it when news media continuously speaks about "Sisi, who is near certain to win the election...". What election ar they talking about? "Elect' implies that someone is chosen, it implies choice!!! There is no choice in the Egyptian bogus-'election': There is Sisi, Sisi, Sisi and a straw man and former crony, so ultimately a bosom friend of Sisi and his friends -therefore Sisi again. What choice is given to the Egyptian people to 'elect'? A complete charade and whoever calls it an 'election' is a fool or is trying to forcefully spread the impression that Egypt 'is all normal' now. Well, it's not. The Sisi is in power for almost one year now and nothing improved for the Egyptians during this time. The streets are a mess, and the guy, who has the nerve to tell in national public TV that he would leave, if the citizens asked him to leave, is stubbornly ignoring the increasing calls for him to leave. He pretends that half of the country is part of an illegal terrorist organization - namely the half that is marching the streets for one year now in order to get through to his impaired hearing. He is unfit to lead, being neither a politician nor an economist, lacking the necessary education and obviously insight into the problems of the country. A leader, whose only answer to his nation's problems is not to criticize him for the next upcoming 2 years is a joke, especially one that came through power through a military coup overthrowing a legitimate government after barely one year in power. Sisi should just do like the cronies before him, pack your embezzled money and leave the country and let people live without your guns and tanks in front of their faces.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More