Alexandria, Gharbia Candidates Banned from Applying for Elections
|Thursday, May 17,2007 00:00|
Muslim Brotherhood candidates of Alexandria and Gharbia complained that security forces have prevented them from submitting their credentials to run for the anticipated Shura Council (Legislative Council) elections.
In Alexandria, Dr. Osama Nasr, head of the MB administrative office of Alexandria said that what had happened today was a real mockery as MB candidates were prevented from presenting their applications.
Nasr expressed strong resentment over the government and security forced measures, alluding to the harassment and obstacles laid by security forces who barred them access.
Mr. Khalaf Bayoumi, a lawyer and MB lawyer chief of Alexandria, said that the Security Provincial residence was turned into a fortress with candidates denied access except those of the ruling National Democratic Party. These procedures confirm the Egyptian regime’s intention to stop any opposition at the Shura Council.
Many legal actions would be taken in response to those violations against MB candidates, Bayoumi added.
In Dakahlia, Mr. Ahmad Othman, an MB leader, said that MB would take part in two constituencies only: Talkha and Meit-Ghmar. Applicants have not faced any obstacles so far, he added.
Gharbia security forces in Tanta encircled the security provincial residence and prevented citizens wishing to run for Shura Council elections from entering the building. The forces are led by state security officers who stubbornly refused to allow both the candidate and his lawyer in, demanding that either the candidate or his lawyer to get in.
Human rights organizations deemed authority’s reluctance to give candidates symbols ((symbols are offered to candidates to make it easy for illiterate voters to cast their ballot for them)) to candidates who registered at the early hours of Wednesday as a proof of NDP wish to keep its favoured symbols and thus violating the principle of equality among candidates.
Egyptian Interior Minister Habib Al-Adly had announced that applications for the renewal elections of 50% of the council seats would start as of Wednesday May 16th, 2007 till Sunday evening May 20th, 2007. The applications will be handed to the security provincials as of 9 am local time till 1:30 pm but the final day it would be extended till 5 pm. Elections would be held in 67 constituencies to elect 88 members.
The decision included that polling process would start at 8 am local time and continue till 7 pm. If voters were present inside polling stations at the end of polling time, a list of there name should be made so as to be allowed to cast their votes.
The decision of the Higher Committee stated that elections would be held in one day under the committee’s supervision. The committee would set the rules necessary for regulating elections propaganda. The rules include a ban on slogans or symbols of religious type or those based on racial and ethnic discrimination.
It is worth noting that Egyptian opposition parties are boycotting Shura elections protesting the recent constitutional amendments and the abolishing of full judicial supervision over elections, describing the move as an insistence from the part of the state to legalize rigging.