Volunteer writer Ishaq Adams gives a background to this year’s lesser known Egyptian elections, and explains how events have unfolded so far


While the U.S election has witnessed claims of voter fraud, voter suppression and a refusal to concede by Donald Trump, another election has been taking place in Egypt. Egypt, unlike the U.S has been subject to huge amounts of political instability for decades via its former authoritarian ruler Hosni Mubarak.

Mubarak was deposed in the historic Arab Uprisings of 2011 (known as the Arab Spring) following a reign of over 40 years during which he subjected vast amounts of Egyptian citizens to Police Brutality, lack of political freedoms and the fundamental human right of free speech and high unemployment, to name a few standout themes of his tenure. With the removal of Mubarak and many authoritarian rulers in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) in 2011 a new democratic hope spread across hundreds of millions of people, however this hope did not remain in many countries of the MENA.

The democratic Egyptian elections that have begun and are set to conclude on the 14th of December are indeed historic and a breath of fresh air to a year dogged with so much negativity. In a region where so many democratic hopes have failed, indeed seen in Egypt itself following the Arab uprisings where the current president in fact lead a military coup to take power. Despite this a fair and free democratic process is seemingly taking place with nearly 63 million Egyptian citizens eligible to vote

The Egyptian 2020 parliamentary elections have so far had two rounds. Supporters of President Abdel Farrah el-Sisi are expected to win however as seen in the U.S, election polling and predictions can always go terribly wrong. Critics say the election is neither free nor fair and candidates have been hand selected from loyal individuals. Despite this over 9 million citizens voted in the first stage of voting and 31 million are able to vote in the second stage. In addition to this, the president and many other political counterparts have encouraged a high voter turnout to ensure this election is seen as fair.

Despite criticism, the voting is being observed by 56 local organisations and 14 foreign organisations as well as hundreds of foreign and domestic media outlets. This is a truly historic moment for Egypt, which during the last 50 years has only seen transfers of power via military action, rather than through a peaceful democratic process. Even with Covid-19, preventative measures against the spread of the highly infectious disease have been taken with a mask wearing mandate and social distancing in force.

The first phase of the elections resulted in a majority for the pro-government Mostaqbal Watan Party and as stated previously the incumbent president is expected to win.

The Egyptian elections are not likely to make news headlines worldwide. This election will not impact our lives. Soon many of us will have forgotten all about it, however with the UK as a pillar of democracy and a shining example to the world it is important to note, acknowledge and praise when nations with such tumultuous pasts of voter suppression, political instability and a tendency to violence engage in the democratic process ensuring millions of citizens have a voice and feel represented.


Header by Christos Alamaniotis – Assistant Head of Design

Article edited by Connor Wade – Politics Editor


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