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Constructing the Elections Project ROB STOTHARD

I arrived in Egypt a year late. The January 25 revolution that had captured the imaginations of millions all over the world was over. On January 25 2012, hundreds of thousands of Egyptians returned to Tahrir Square to celebrate the day that it all began. Marches from all corners of the megalopolis converged on the landmark roundabout. It was a joyous occasion on a scale I’d only witnessed at music festivals. The scene wasn’t dissimilar. The Muslim Brotherhood supporters, the majority by far, waved the Egyptian flag in unison as a plethora of distinguished guests rallied their support from the main stage. Smaller stages were set up for the revolutionary groups such as the April 6th Youth Movement and the hard line Salafist. After sunset I returned to the streets near the square where young men and women were chanting “Yaskut yaskut hukm el askar”, one proudly wearing a police riot helmet he had assumably acquired prior to the day. Translated as “down with the military rule” I was quick to learn this phrase. Just days after Hosni Mubarak, the realisation that the army wasn’t going anywhere soon sank in. Leaving the square that evening, a young woman stood beside her parents and a younger sister gestured towards me to photograph the sign she was proudly holding, arms stretched, for people leaving the square and heading towards downtown to read. It was in Arabic that I couldn’t understand but photographed it anyway out of politeness. Once I moved my camera away from my face she turned the placard around to reveal its English translation, ‘Continuation not Celebration’.

Mohammad Morsi greeted thousands of adoring supporters before swearing a symbolic outh of office in Tahrir Square. June 29th 2012, Tahrir Square, Cairo Cairo Governorate

On February 1st 2012, 74 football supporters died at a football match in Port Said between local Al-Masry and Al-Ahly visiting from Cairo, the world’s worst football riot in over a decade. Many believe that the attacks were orchestrated in revenge against the die hard fans known as Ultras, who’s braveness and skill in outfighting the security forces were key during the revolution. The next afternoon Ultras focused their

anger against the police and interior ministry, accused of allowing weapons into the stadium and not intervening, and a week of street clashes began. The discourse stayed the same - the military had to relinquish power to a civilian authority. However the people in the square were losing their voice. The mass protests of early 2011, a fluid display of pluralism with Islamists alongside secular liberals who were demanding the same things, was infectious. Yet by the time parliamentary candidates had to submit their papers the square was visibly polarised. The image of the square had changed and the generals were happy for the world to see it, to see the possibility of their worst fears of an Islamic government being realised. By mid-April, the bearded Salafist Hazem Abu Ismail had become a frontrunner in the presidential race. His posters plastered all over Cairo, his combination of hard-line Islamism and charisma took had taken him from being a popular speaker to a serious contender. His anti-American stance and commitment to implementing Sharia were praised by many, and soon the Friday rallies in Tahrir Square were dominated by the bearded men and veiled women. The disqualification of Abu Ismail, on the grounds that his late mother held US nationality, was strenuously denied and contested but his appeal was rejected angering his large support base. The thought spread that the military had conspired to have the ultraconservative Ismail disqualified and in response a sit-in began outside the military of defense in the Abbaseya district of Cairo. The sit-in was attacked by thugs, armed shotguns and knives. Who these thugs were was the subject of debate: military supporters, paid ‘baltageya’ (thugs), plain clothed police. What is certain is that the violence in Abbaseya increased the fear of instability among the wider population, driving them into the hands of military just as serious campaigning began. From roadside police stations to small farming in

the Nile Delta communities to the luxury of the JW Marriot Hotel in one of Cairo’s infamous satellite cities I followed the the main candidates as they travelled far and wide to explain to Egyptians from all walks of life why they were right for the job. After Abu Ismail went out in a bang and Aboul Fotouh inhereited the Salafi vote the polls pegged him and Amr Moussa neck-and-neck. After an elaborate televised debate, the first in Egyptian history, organised by polling media group Al-Masri Al-Youm the two seemed to drop in popularity, said to have lost public respect for bickering and attacking each other personally. Ahmed Shafiq’s popularity started to increase in May and whilst many suspected that the former air force commander was being lined up as the military’s choice, he had real appeal through his stability message to millions fed up with the social and political turmoil since the collapse of Mubarak’s police state. After pushing past Hamdeen Sabbahi for a place in the run-off Shafiq’s place as the secular candidate basically handed him Egypt’s 10% Christian minority who feared a rising Islamic power. On June 24th, stood below a makeshift stage in Tahrir Square on front of thousands of Mohammad Morsi supporters awaiting the final election result, their anxiety fueled my fear. Both candiates had claimed victory, one as confidently as the other, and various scenarios ran through my head as men and women prayed and wept as the results were blasted out of loudspeakers over the square. With rumours spreading about increased security, tanks and armored personal carriers positioned on the edge of the city, it was hard to see how any result would have a peaceful outcome. Celebrations by Morsi’s supporters continued for days however without a parliament and decreased power after a military issued constitutional declaration there is a bumpy road ahead.

Freedom and Justice party media center 25th May 2012, Mansour Street, Cairo Cairo Governorate

A train passes through a small station as Amr Moussa meets local villagers and policemen 18th May 2012, East of Alexandria Al Buhayrah Governorate

First round results are monitored at a villa housing Ahmed Shafiq’s press center 25th May 2012, Dokki Giza Governorate

The stage for Abdel Moneim Aboul Fotouh before a women’s conference 15th May 2012, Nasr City Cairo Governorate

AMR MOUSSA ‘The Diplomat’

Combining an intimidating statesman and a man of the people, Amr Moussa found himself as a front runner in the presidential elections leading up to the first round of voting. Having served as Hosni Mubarak’s foreign minister, the 76 year seemed to have reinvented himself as a supporter of the revolution and a reformist with his career of political and public diplomacy supporting his campaign. His political career began 1958 when he started working in the Foreign Affairs Ministry from where he worked his way up and represented Egypt in a number of countries, eventually becoming Egypt’s permanent representative to the UN in 1990 and Minister of Foreign Affairs in 1991. During his 10 years in this role Moussa continued to increase in popularity, in part due to his anti-Israel rhetoric, major consideration or Egyptian-European relations. In 2001, Moussa was appointed secretary general of the Arab League, a move that many believe was orchestrated by former president Hosni Mubarak, moving him from national politics intimidated by his increasing popularity. In regards to the revolution he seemed to take it in his stride and adapt, trying to distance himself from the ‘regime’, even describing his 10 years serving in Mubarak government’s Foreign Affairs Ministry as “the most difficult years of my life.” He claimed to have joined protesters in Tahrir Square after the infamous Battle of the Camel on February 2nd 2011 and that the events of that day finally made him realise the full extend of Mubarak’s corrupt and torturous system of governance. Moussa never questioned to ruling military council nor the Muslim Brotherhood, whose political wing, the Freedom and Justice Party, dominated Parliament currently order to dissolve despite calling for presidential elections to come before parliamentary elections, concerned with the evident possibility that the Muslim Brotherhood would dominate parliament. Since the official start of his bid for the presidency Moussa worked on the Egyptian masses, touring rural governorates, not concerning himself with the revolutionary forces, a lost cause for a man considered part of the old regime. He rarely referred to the revolution, instead focussing on improving the economy, fighting poverty and improving education, showing concern with the problems of ordinary citizens. In addition to this approach he initially sold himself as a secular option, a fruitful approach to many concerned about increasing Islamisation following the parliamentary elections. For the well-to-do, Moussa sells himself as a viable secular option to the increasing Islamization of the state, albeit not positioning himself in direct opposition to Islamic forces. Despite his vast political and diplomatic experience, exceeding that of all the other candidates, he failed to make it to the run-off, claiming 2,588,850 votes, 11.13%.

Amr Moussa Independent 18th May 2012, Idku Al Buhayrah Governorate

A young family watch celebrations after Mohammad Morsi’s victory in the presidential elections is announced 15th June 2012, Qasr al-Nil Bridge, Cairo Cairo Governorate

Girls wait with flowers for Mohammad Morsi at a rally in their small Nile Delta town 17th May 2012, Benha Qalyubia Governorate

A man squeezes into a line of men at evening prayers during a supporing disqualified presidential candidate Hazem Salah Abu Ismail 6th April 2012, Tahrir Square, Cairo Cairo Governorate

How The Ellections Were Won MAX STRASSER

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neque nulla. Nulla quis ligula vel velit dapibus luctus id at nisi. Nullam at rhoncus ante. Aliquam erat volutpat. Fusce elit ipsum, laoreet id convallis nec, placerat eget sem. Phasellus et pulvinar ante. Nam urna purus, vestibulum ut ullamcorper a, ornare eu erat. Aenean purus lorem, hendrerit eu eleifend gravida, scelerisque vel libero. Nulla lacus turpis, porttitor semper lobortis a, hendrerit sit amet nulla. Donec id tellus lorem, nec facilisis augue. Vestibulum accumsan accumsan ipsum ut mollis. Nunc non lorem quis dui vehicula rhoncus eget quis odio. Donec tempor feugiat erat. Phasellus et dui id sem lobortis iaculis nec convallis est. In hac habitasse platea dictumst. Ut pulvinar adipiscing eleifend. Ut sed ipsum ac mauris lacinia tincidunt placerat eget orci. Etiam ullamcorper odio eu nulla congue eget rhoncus erat mattis. Aliquam non nibh quis ligula viverra rhoncus. Etiam eu nisi vitae elit aliquet imperdiet. Class aptent taciti sociosqu ad litora torquent per conubia nostra, per inceptos himenaeos. Duis faucibus ligula sed erat sagittis ac porttitor enim bibendum. Aliquam id enim quis augue varius accumsan. Nam egestas, dolor sit amet semper tempor, velit nunc viverra ipsum, dignissim consectetur neque ante ut purus. Phasellus ut justo vel mi auctor imperdiet nec nec turpis. Donec vitae dui eu ligula porta porttitor ac sit amet ipsum. In ut tortor erat, eu dapibus erat. Sed iaculis pretium dui sit amet dignissim. Cras dignissim erat gravida massa facilisis euismod. Sed rhoncus pellentesque metus id ornare. Praesent ac justo eu velit suscipit facilisis. Fusce placerat dui tellus. Suspendisse sed nisl in erat consequat dapibus ut eget elit. Sed vestibulum, dui non condimentum pellentesque, orci quam aliquam tellus, sit amet sollicitudin mi dolor a eros. Integer eget ligula felis, ut dignissim sapien. Donec non tellus vitae felis aliquam consectetur. Vivamus velit felis, lobortis sed iaculis lacinia, lobortis et erat. Nunc laoreet lacus et leo iaculis a pretium augue cursus. Duis orci turpis, viverra nec pellentesque quis, lacinia vitae magna. Nam nulla dui, varius pellentesque porta dictum, consequat sed dui. Vestibulum aliquam velit et lectus lobortis tempor. Sed quam leo, faucibus ac luctus et, semper volutpat arcu. Aenean scelerisque ultrices commodo. Suspendisse eu lectus quis dui auctor eleifend. Nam nec orci in turpis imperdiet euismod. Donec id ante ac urna facilisis vehicula. Nullam faucibus quam id nisl pharetra accumsan. Maecenas eget porttitor ante. Aliquam commodo lacus at lacus ultricies porttitor. Integer sagittis varius mi at luctus. In pretium iaculis lorem, id mollis nisi blandit et. Fusce mattis volutpat quam non pharetra. Donec vitae orci eget est viverra viverra. Fusce laoreet tortor in dolor vulputate commodo. Morbi fermentum arcu non eros mollis viverra ac in elit. Morbi arcu tellus, blandit eget suscipit ac, accumsan at eros. Cras iaculis tincidunt lacus ac aliquam. In hac habitasse platea dictumst.

ABOUL FOTOUH ‘The Reformer’

When leader of the Cairo University Student Union a young Abdel Moneim Aboul Fotouh publically accused then President Anwar AlSadat of being a hypocrite to angry response. This heated exchanged damaged the young student’s career dreams, denied a place at the university’s medical school as a professor despite his credentials. Generations of political activism, built on his reputation of standing up to a dictator, Aboul Fotouh quickly became a front runner for the post-Mubarak presidency. Aboul Fotouh is an Islamist politician who draws his outlook from different interpretations of Islam. He believes in an ideological evolution from radical Islamism, rejecting the other and moving to a more moderate version of Islam, a reflection of his days as a founder of the fundamentalist Jama’a al-Islamiya in the early 1970s, a Salafist ideal that he let go of through the support of the Muslim Brotherhood. Abouel Fotouh contributed significantly to the Muslim Brotherhood by convincing thousands Jama’a al-Islamiya members to to join the Islamist organization with recently released leaders that Sadat hoped would counter leftist forces.   Decades later Aboul Fotouh, a leader at the Arab Doctors Union, ended up embracing more liberal views and despite his historic role in the Muslim Brotherhood he was excluded from the organisation’s Guidance Bureau. He was fully dismissed from the Muslim Brotherhood in July 2011 after voicing his intent to compete in the presidential elections after the organisation decided not to field a candidate.   His campaign was distinct in its discourse regarding the secularIslamist divide in Egypt and he marketed himself as the link between the two building on almost eight years of his personal efforts to put gain support for a liberal form of Islamism.   Aboul Fotouh rose as a resilient opponent of Mubarak’s regime as well as positioning himself between the Muslim Brotherhood and any secular political force. He was involved with an earlier wave of anti-Mubarak protests organised by the Kefaya movement that he co-founded, and participated in protests opposing the grooming of Gabal Mubarak to inherit his father’s power. He expressed progessive views regarding women and Copts that challenged to mainstream ideals of his Islamist cohorts.   Initially unable to secure support from the Islamists or the Liberals, Aboul Fotouh gained enormously from the Salafi vote following Hazem Abu Ismail’s disqualification.   Without any elaborate political platform his ultimate goal was to establishment a parliamentary system - his outlooked was criticised as lacking depth and sophistication. Aboul Fotouh suffered a similar fate as Amr Moussa - initially deemed a front runner on polls conjured up by the Egyptian media, he failed to establish reliable support base, coming in fourth with 4,065,239 vote, 17.47%.

Abdel Moneim Aboul Fotouh Independent 15th May 2012, Nasr City Cairo Governorate

Fencing is broken down and used as sheilds during clashes with the military outside the Minstry of Defence 4th May 2012, Abbaseya Cairo Governorate

A busy polling station in an upscale Cairo suburb 16th June 2012, Heliopolis Cairo Governorate

Mohammad Morsi talks to local village elders and business leaders 11th June 2012, Kafr El-Sheikh Kafr el-Sheikh Governorate

Protesters prevent each other from confronting police and local thugs near to the Ministry of Defence 2nd May 2012, Abbaseya Cairo Governorate


When Gamal Abdel Nasser died in 1970, his form of big-government socialist economies and pan-Arab nationalism was left in the mind of many idealogues. Although rarely visible in Egyptian politics, one Nasserist remained a legitimate candidate for the for presidency, Hamdeen Sabbahi. “One of us”, his electoral slogan reads. Fashioned as a man of the people and a face of the rural poor, Sabbahi was born in 1954 in a village close to Kafr el-Sheikh in Lower Egypt. Sabbahi is usually discussesd in reference to his in person dressdown of then-President Anwar al-Sadat in 1977 whilst a studen tof mass communication and president of the student union at Cairo University. Sabbahi criticised Sadat over his departure from Nasserism, a shift towards neo-liberalism and for seeming to decrease support for the Palestinian cause. Since then he has been a vocal opposition figure in Egyptian politics. In the first of a series of detentions, Sabbahi was arrested in 1979 along with other left-wing activists for instigating the widespread bread riots. Sabbahi is a member of the Arab Democratic Nasserist Party but stayed active in politics, and after leaving the party in 1996 he formed the Karama party. Despite Karama not being an official party until after the revolution since it was considered a radical ideological group by the Mubarak regime, Sabbahi was seated in parliament as an independent from 2000 to 2010. In 2004 Sabbahi formed the Karama newspaper through which he endevoured to push a his political agenda. In 2005, he formed the Kefaya movement alongside other prominent activists alongside whom he led a wave of protests against the rule of Hosni Mubarak and the positing of his son, Gamal, to take over the presidency. A founding member of this group, one considered to be direct catalyst of the January 25 revolution Hamdeen Sabbahi is one presidential candidate that can more than claim to have been played a significant role in changing the face of Egypt. Sabbahi largely had the support of the Tagammu Party, a pre-revolution left-wing party, along with any public figures who came out in support of the Nasserist hopeful. Like other candidates, Sabbahi was able to use media attention to his advantage in a country of millions where television has a huge influence over the population. One of Sabbahi’s main campaign platforms was to immediately implement social welfare programs and a dramatic minimum wage increase to around $200. Sabbahi charmed many of the revolutionaries and liberal youth who began to realise he had a legitimate chance of making it to the run off, eventually claiming third place with 4,820,273 vote, 20.72%. He had hoped to enhance Egypt’s position as a regional powerhouse, actively support the Palestinian cause and encourage cooperation with Iran and Turkey to decrease American influence in national and regional politics.

Hamdeen Sabbahi Dignity Party 20th May 2012, Dokki Giza Governorate

AHMED SHAFIQ ‘The Remnant’

Forced to resign as prime minister during raging protests due to his close ties to the former regime, Ahmed Shafiq’s return to the political scene is in defiance of the revolution that saw his friend Hosni Mubarak’s ouster. Shafiq, 71, believed that the ongoing protests in Tahrir Square that had focussed on the return to civilian rule didn’t represent the opinion of the majority, himself a military man. Shafiq grew up around government officials, his father and fatherin-law were both ministers, however in 1961 he graduated from the Egyptian Air Force Academy and joined the air force aged 20. He later earned a master’s degree and a PhD in the national strategy of outer space. Shafiq fought in the North Yemen Civil War in 1962, the War of Attrition with Israel between 1967 and 1970, and the 1973 war with Israel, during which he served under the command of then-Commander of the Air Force Hosni Mubarak. He was appointed air force chief chief of staff in 1991 and held this position for 5 years before becoming air force commander. In 2002, Mubarak was accused of tailoring a position, Egypt’s first civil aviation minister, for Shafiq who had refused the position as Egyptian ambassador to France. He remained in this position until Mubarak asked him to form a new government amidst the popular protest that began on January 25, a position that he held for a month. Shafiq’s military background and work in the Civil Aviation Ministry was the basis for his public campaign for presidency. He is well known for the ambitious restructuring of Egypt Air, making it the leading carrier in the Middle East and Africa and securing its membership of the Star Alliance coalition. During his campaign he repeatedly reminded journalists of his transforming of Cairo International Airport into a regional hub through building Terminal 3 and expanding Sharm-el-Sheikh airport. Despite these achievements, Shafiq had over 40 lawsuits filed against him before the first round of voting, accused of corruption and squandering public funds. Shafiq never attempted to distance himself from Mubarak, once saying“I know him as much as I know myself,” in a TV interview on 1 February. Shafiq had no sympathy with the revolutionaries, questioning their legitimacy as representatives of the people who he said were mostly at home, instead referring to the popular protests as an expression of anger, not a revolution. He blamed the protests for the country’s economic and security problems. Despite this, Shafiq found support elsewhere, targeting the average Egyptian by embodying the authoritarian and patriarchal values that Mubarak had and that many Egyptians ended up mourning. Expected to be the runner up in the group of men linked to the former regime behind Amr Moussa, Shafiq claimed 5,505,327 (23.66%) of the first round votes, suggested by some to be thanks to his relationship with the then ruling military council, that earned his place in the run-off current president Mohammad Morsi. Ahmed Shafiq Independent 3rd June 2012, JW Marriot, Mirage City Cairo Governorate

Kafr El-Sheikh sports stadium before a rally by Mohammad Morsi 11th June 2012, Kafr El-Sheikh Kafr El-Sheikh Governorate

First round results are monitored at Hamdeen Sabbahi’s regional headquarters 25th May 2012, Midan Libnan, Mohandissen Giza Governorate

Ahmed Shafiq speaks to Egyptian businessmen at a Canada Egypt Business Council 13th June 2012, Nile Tower Nile, Cairo Cairo Governorate

The canteen at the Freedom and Justice Party media center 28th May 2012, Mansour Street, Cairo Cairo Governorate

Inky Fingers: Democracy in Action or Neo-Liberal Pornography ROB STOTHARD

Applied to the forefinger of voters during elections to prevent electoral fraud, ‘election ink’ has proven to be an effective method for countries.

and its allies refused, instead imposing a centralised presidential system of government. The US imposed their agent, Hamid Karzai, on the Afghan people.

America invaded Iraq in 2003 to, among other reasons, liberate its people and spread democracy throughout the country. After less than two years, Iraqis went to the polls and the US media was awash with purple ink.

Less than 20% of the eligible voters cast a ballot, made evident by the purple inkz on their forefinger. Some had their fingers cut off by the Taliban. The allies rushed to declare the elections a success despite it being one of the most country’s most violent days in nearly a decade.

This became the symbol of Iraqi freedom, a signifier of a fledgling democracy and by the end of that year, all US troops were supposed to be out of Iraq. Referred to as Operation Iraqi Freedom by the US Military, their work was done. They stayed until 2011. Afghanistan held presidential elections in late 2009 under clear US influence. Many wanted a return of the 1964 constitution, established in an open and democratic manner however, the US government

Like in Iraq and Afghanistan the parliamentary elections process in Egypt took place during some of the most country’s most trying times. Fixation on this signifier defers from the more noteworthy issues and allows the western public closure. The purple ink should be been seen as a sign of democracy in action but a symbol of long struggle ahead. The fraud is no longer the electoral process, it is the context and the meta-politics of democratic transition.

Supporters of Amr Moussa cheer upon his arrival at a rally in their small town east of Alexandria 18th May 2012, Itku Al Buhayrah Governorate

In anticipation of Mohammad Morsi’s victory his supporters erected tents in Tahrir Square the week before the official results 29th June 2012, Tahrir Square, Cairo Cairo Governorate

Young men on the Al Gamaa bridge the day after the final round of voting 15th June 2012, Manial Cairo Governorate

A senior police officer patrols outside a conference room whilst Ahmed Shafiq speaks to journalists 3rd June 2012, JW Marriot, Mirage City Cairo Governorate

Men are sprayed with high pressure water cannons as they throw rocks at military near the Ministry of Defence 4th May 2012, Abbaseya Cairo Governorate

Local policemen and the army outside a polling station 17th June 2012, Reya Gazna Sharqiya Governorate

Egyptian Presidential Guard 29th June 2012, Tahrir Square, Cairo Cairo Governorate

KHALED ALI ‘The Revolutionary’

The youngest of the Egyptian presidential candidates, Khaled Ali, 40, spent the last decade building his popularity as a human rights lawyer and a respected member of the socialist and activist crowd. Ali joined the presidential race late on, only announcing his intention to run the day after his 40th birthday, the minimum age requirement for presidential candidates. A key figure of numerous marches, leading famous chants such as “bread, freedom and social justice” as street protests took central Cairo by storm since 25 January revolution he is unlike many of the other candidates. Ali is well known for his nationwide support of the economic and social rights of Egypt’s rural masses, a key figure in terms of his legal support for student protests, farmers’ struggles, workers’ rights and factory protests. Ali is a proven critic of the Mubarak regime. He is a founding member of the independent Hisham Mubarak Law Center where he worked providing legal support for imprisoned anti-Mubarak activists. Accused of illegal revolutionary activities, security forces raided the center’s office and arrested Ali for several days in early February 2011. Ali’s main goal was to be the candidate that the revolutionary’s could unite in support of. He gained grass-roots support from Egypt’s working classes in response to his campaigns for independent trade unionism and labour rights thanks to his success in the law of this field. Ali has championed other candidates in his criticism of the military junta that has governed Egypt since the resignation of Hosni Mubarak. In particular he fought against the then ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) over the 12,000 civilians due to face military tribunals since the revolution began. Ali’s socialist ideals were reflected in his intention to impose a maximum wage cap of not more than 15 times the minimum wage and appealing a law that criminalised strikes and protests. His campaign platform sought to empower Egypt’s workers and farmers calling for cooperatives that would reclaim desert lands aim for self-sufficiency in agricultural production. He called for the free education - part of a key framework aimed at eradicating illiteracy, lifting Egyptians out of poverty and a step towards dealing with unemployment - progressive taxation, fair redistribution of land, natural resources and wealth, balancing public and private sectors of the economy, organising the informal sector of the economy, job security. Ali’s secular and populist ideals were ambitious , leaving him as an underdog from the start, even having difficulty collecting the 30,000 prerequisite endorsements, relying on those from 30 pro-revolution members of parliament. Khaled Ali’s campaign collected a meagre 134,056, or 0.58%, of the votes. Khaled Ali Independent 28th June 2012, Tahrir Square, Cairo Cairo Governorate

A young member of the Muslim Brotherhood at a Mohammad Morsi rally 20th May 2012, Abdeen Cairo Governorate

An elderly woman prepares to vote in an upscale suburb 23rd May 2012, Midan Misaha, Dokki Giza Governorate

Identification is checked at a polling station in a Christian neighbourhood 23rd May 2012, Mansheit Nasser Cairo Governorate

The judge in charge of the polling station watches a man cast his ballot 17th June 2012, Fayoum Fayoum Governorate

A young women protests against Ahmed Shafiq’s place in the presidential run-off 29th May 2012, Talat Harb Street, Cairo Cairo Governorate

Women vote at a polling station on the final evening of voting 16th June 2012, Imbaba Giza Governorate


“God willing Morsy will be the winner.” This chant could be heard at every rally since his controversial announcement as a presidential candidate. Just a few hours before the nomination period ended the Muslim Brotherhood introduced Mohammad Morsi after Shater, its preferred candidate and influential leader, was disqualified for his criminal record. Throughout his campaign’s early stages Morsi became a symbol of the organisation’s indecisiveness and he because branded ‘the spare tyre’, a puppet of Shater who followed him on the campaign trail, Morsy was born in 1951 in the Nile Delta governorate of Sharqiya. He studied engineering at Cairo University before pursuing a PHD at the University of South California, staying in the US with his family and working as a professor. He returned to Egypt in the 1980s and taught at Zagazig University’s Faculty of Engineering in his home governorate. Morsi didn’t become a prominent member of the Muslim Brotherhood until the late 2000s, his ascent related to his close ties with Shater, support said to be gained through his calm, trustworthy nature and commitment to the group’s strict internal discipline. In April 2011 chose Morsi was chosen as the president of the Freedom and Justice Party, their new political party. Considered a conservative voice within the Islamist organisation he often confrontated younger progressives emboldened by the revolution. Many young brothers challenged the leaders’ orders not to take to the streets on 25 January 2011 and to withdraw from the square during the Battle of the Camel. Morsi however had been involved in protests himself. In 2006 he was detained for seven months, alleged to have participated in a protest denouncing Mubarak’s interference with the judiciary. He was also arrested in the early morning of 28 January 2011 along with several Muslim Brotherhood leaders as part of Mubarak’s last desperate attempts to prevent the protests that were planned for that infamous day. Officially the group cited Morsi’s work as a parliamentarian, noting how during his 5 years in office he remained committed to democracy, Sharia and opposed to Mubarak’s regime. He was also an outspoken critic of the Egypt-Israel gas deal. In the final month before the elections Morsi’s chances to survive the first phase weren’t predicted to be strong, concern being that the Brotherhood candidate was unable to secure the support of various Islamist factions. Once the Salafi Nour Party officially supported Aboul Fotouh his chances looked even slimmer. In the end the power and reach of the Muslim Brotherhood was underestimated. With the Muslim Brotherhood’s 80 years of organisational experience and unmatched grassroots support, Morsi ended up connecting with the rural majority to claim 5,764,952 vote, 24.78% of the first round total. Mohammad Morsi earnt the presidency with 51.73% of the the second round run off votes. Mohammad Morsi Freedom and Justice Party 29th May 2012, Fairmont Towers, Heliopolis Cairo Governorate

A man’s hands are covered with indelible ink inside a polling station close to the birthplace of Mohammad Morsi 17th June 2012, Near El-Edwa Sharqiya Governorate

A man waits outside a polling station 17th June 2012, Reya Gazna Sharqiya Governorate

A soldier gesters to queuing voters outside a polling station in the final hour of voting 17th June 2012, Imbaba Giza Governorate

Policemen stand guard outside the Supreme Constitutional Court 14th June 2012, Maadi Cairo Governorate

Celebrations after Mohammad Morsi’s victory is announced 24th June 2012, Cairo Cairo Governorate

Egypt: An Elections Project  

Rob Stothard MAPJD Unit 1.1

Egypt: An Elections Project  

Rob Stothard MAPJD Unit 1.1