Elections to Observe in 2011

Elections to Observe in 2011

A recent article in Foreign Policy shed light on elections to watch in 2011.
Mention was made of Egypt’s presidential elections scheduled for late 2011 with remarks from President Hosni Mubarak who has held power for almost thirty years.

Judging by the farcical parliamentary poll held in November, the results reveal that he shows no sign of letting go as he and his ruling regime silently observed the elections which were marred with riggings and an outcome of an overwhelming 98% majority, favouring his ruling National Democratic Party.

It is safe to assume that Mubarak has succeeded in maintaining his tight grip on power by monopolizing a tame parliament which will aid the smooth transition of power or his continuing of it.

Mubarak, who had reiterated that he will remain in office until the last breath in his lungs, is aging and is not in good health, analysts, however, still expect him to run for re-election in September.

Mubarak, who has been in power since the assassination of Anwar Sadat in 1981, was re-elected in 2005 in what was officially described as the first multiparty elections of his presidency. As usual in any of Egypt’s elections, and at any level, reports of fraud were widespread and the Muslim Brotherhood – the country’s most popular opposition group – was prohibited from fielding a candidate.

Former IAEA chief, Dr. Mohamed El-Baradei, who recently emerged on the political scene, has urged a boycott of next year’s presidential vote similar to his call for the boycott of the parliamentary poll where he appealed to the opposition to participate in the elections on the grounds that they should first be given guarantees that the elections would be free, fair and transparent.

Attention is focused mostly on the Mubarak family as it appears there will be little credible opposition. NDP officials have confirmed, in fact, that the president will run for re-election unless he chooses otherwise. Hearsay has it, however, that despite denials, his son Gamal is being groomed to inherit power if his father chooses to step down.

With many speculations concerning the future it remains to be seen who will be a possible contender if Mubarak does not choose to relinquish his hold and dies in power.