Campaigning in second phase of Egypt parliamentary elections kicks off

Tuesday 03-11-2015 12:11 PM
Campaigning in second phase of Egypt parliamentary elections kicks off

Voting in the first phase of the parliamentary elections kicked off on Sunday, Oct 17, 2015. ASWAT MASRIYA/ Asmaa Gamal


CAIRO, Nov. 3 (Aswat Masriya) - Campaigning in the second phase of Egypt's parliamentary elections began Tuesday, officially kick-starting the competition across 102 constituencies in 13 Egyptian provinces.

According to the State Information Service 222 seats will be up for grabs in the second phase the elections.

The final list of candidates joining the race is due to be announced later today.

The total number of voters in the second phase is 27.5 million, roughly the same number of voters as in the first phase. Cairo's share of eligible voters alone is 6.8 million.

The campaigning period for the upcoming phase will last two weeks, to end on Nov. 17.   

But for many candidates, the start of the campaigning period only means stepping up the advertising, since many had already been campaigning before the official start date in violation of rules set by the Supreme Electoral Commission (SEC).   

Similarly, in the first phase of voting, which was held in 14 provinces last month, candidates often campaigned outside the set dates but SEC took no action against them.

SEC has the right to disqualify a candidate "if it is proven" that he or she has violated the regulations on campaigning stipulated in the constitution, laws or SEC's own decisions, by making a request at the Administrative Court.

The first phase of the poll was marked by a high level of youth apathy and low turnout rates, observers say.

The turnout was 26.56 percent of a total of 27.4 million, but only four candidates running as individuals secured seats in the first round of voting.

Run-offs were held in 99 constituencies, with a turnout rate of 21.71 percent, after 5.5 million eligible voters cast their votes, out of a total of 25.58 million.  

In addition to Cairo, the provinces of Qalyubia, Daqahliyah, Menoufia, Gharbia, Kafr el-Sheikh, Sharqiya, Damietta, Port Said, Ismailia, Suez, North Sinai and South Sinai will head to the polls from Nov. 21-22  abroad and from Nov. 22-23 inside Egypt.

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