Opposition Divided on International Supervision of Elections

Opposition Divided on International Supervision of Elections

The Muslim Brotherhood and Gad party have decided to support a pact, which a number of public intellectuals have signed, demanding international supervision of the upcoming presidential and parliamentary elections. The Nasserist party and the unlicensed Wasat Party have refused to join.

As for the Brotherhood’s support for the pact, and the question of whether there is a rift between the Brotherhood’s parliamentary members, some of whom have signed the pact, and the organization’s official stance, Supreme Guide Mehdi Akef said: “Come on, man. That’s an incomprehensible question. The whole [MB parliamentary] delegation signed the pact and you ask me what is the group’s position?” He went on to say, “This is a humanitarian and national issue and not just parliamentary.”

The Gad party’s higher council agreed to support the measure and permitted party founder Ayman Nour to sign the document.

On the other hand, Sameh Ashur, Vice Chairman of the Nasserist party, said that his party refused the idea of international supervision of the elections, “Because we don’t trust the credibility of the international community.” He confirmed that the party did not know anything about the pact, nor did they know anything about its contents. Instead, he suggested choosing a number of public personalities well-known for their independence and neutrality to monitor the elections.

Abu al-‘Ila Madi, founding member of the [moderate Islamist] Wasat Party [which has been repeatedly denied a license to operate], also refused to join the pact, stating, “International supervision of elections is but one means of interfering in Egypt’s affairs which we refuse completely.”

Hussein Abd al-Raziq, vice chairman of the [leftist] Tagammua party, said that his party had not joined the agreement, but that his party had, after repeated past instances of electoral fraud, demanded international monitors, on the condition that they come under the aegis of the United Nations.

Fouad Badrawi, vice chairman of the Wafd party, denied that his party had signed the agreement, clarifying that in his personal opinion he refused the idea of international monitors because it represents interference in Egypt’s affairs.

George Ishaq and Dr. Abd al-Galil Mustafa, the leaders of the Kefaya movement, pointed out that the movement had not made a final decision on international monitors. They confirmed that the movement was divided into two factions, with both factions expressing their personal opinions on the matter.