The official two-day electoral silence period began on Saturday at 12 a.m. before Egyptians cast their votes for the three-day voting period beginning Monday.
The prohibitions of election propaganda during the period of electoral silence, according to article 18 of the presidential election law, are as follows:
– Election propaganda is prohibited by any means during the period of electoral silence.
– The activities of the election propaganda include conferences and summits held by the candidate and his supporters.
– All activities which aim to persuade the voters with one candidate is prohibited
– It is prohibited to circulate election propaganda materials such as posters and banners, and use audio, visual, printed and electronic media.
Voting in the 2018 presidential election in Egypt will commence on March 26, as was announced by the NEA on January 8, and will last until March 28. Sixty million eligible voters will be able to cast their ballots in the election during this time, while expatriates already voted between March 16 and 18.
The results of the first round will be announced on April 2. If there is a need to hold a run-off round, Egyptian expatriates will cast their votes again on April 19, 20 and 21. The final 2018 presidential election results are expected to be announced on May 1.
Who are the presidential candidates?
The National Election Authority has approved two official candidates for the 2018 presidential election. They are as follows:
1- Abdel Fatah al-Sisi
Born on November 19, 1954, Sisi is the sixth incumbent president of Egypt; he has been in office since 2014.
Married to his wife Entissar Amer, Sisi has three sons and one daughter.
Prior to becoming president, Sisi served in the Egyptian armed forces from 1977 to 2014.
He announced his intention to run in the 2018 presidential elections during his closing speech at the end of the three-day “Tale of a Homeland” conference held January 19.
2- Moussa Mostafa Moussa
Moussa, who studied architecture in France and heads the Egyptian Council for Arab Tribes, has been the chairman of the el-Ghad Party since September 2005.
Lawyer Samir Elaiwa submitted Moussa’s candidacy documents to the NEA 15 minutes prior to the closing deadline.
Moussa announced that he had collected 20 endorsements from members of Parliament, and that he had garnered the support of 40,000 citizens in various governorates.
Regional and International Observation
Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Hamdy Loza told MENA on Thursday that five regional and international organizations will observe the 2018 presidential election.
These organizations are the League of Arab States (LAS), African Union (AU), Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), Euro-Mediterranean Parliamentary Assembly and the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA).
Loza further elaborated that African observation of the 2018 presidential election symbolizes the solidarity that African people have with their Egyptian neighbors.
Judges supervising the elections
Mahmoud Helmy El-Sherif, deputy chairman of the National Election Authority and its spokesman, confirmed that the authority has increased the number of judges supervising the 2018 presidential election to about 18,678 due to the increase in the number of polling stations and sub-stations. The number of polling stations available for voters currently stands at 13,687 stations. Both increases came as a result of the increase in the number of voters enrolled in the voter database.
Sherif also pointed out that the authority allocated a judge to oversee every voting box. It must be noted that 103,000 citizens are also helping judges in regulating polling stations.
Commenting on requests received by the commission from judges wanting to supervise polls in Sinai, Sherif said that the NEA has received many requests from the judges expressing their desire to supervise the election in North Sinai, despite Comprehensive Operation Sinai 2018. Comprehensive Operation Sinai 2018 was undertaken by the police and armed forces to eradicate terrorism in the area, and Egypt as a whole.
In a statement to Egypt Today, Sherif added that the numerous requests received from judges are a testimony to their enduring love for Egypt and their faith in the country . It also reflects the confidence of the Egyptian people in Egypt’s judges, and all state institutions, in overseeing the election and purging Egypt of terrorism.
Sherif stressed that the judges have a prominent role in the electoral process, particularly since there is a judge for every voting box, and that judges are the basis and the backbone of the electoral process. He also spoke of the difficult task of overseeing the voting for three consecutive days. However, Sherif ended his comments on a positive note, pointing out that judges are at the forefront of those who defend the homeland and are always ready to make precious and generous compromises for Egypt and its people.