CAIRO: The High Presidential Elections Committee (HPEC) announced Tuesday evening that Abdel Fatah al-Sisi will be Egypt’s second president since the January 25 Revolution, winning 23,780,104 votes compared to 757,511 garnered by Hamdeen Sabbahi.
Void votes amounted to 1,040,608.
Celebrations have kicked off in heavily secured and closed Tahrir Square, where people gathered hours before HPEC made its announcement. Sisi is expected to be inaugurated Sunday before the Supreme Constitutional Court in a ceremony that will be attended by Arab and international leaders.
On June 30, 2013, massive protests broke out across Egypt against former President Mohamed Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood from which he hails. Sisi, then minister of defense, ousted him on July 3, garnering immense popularity.
Sisi stressed security and stability as his key campaign issues, vowed to listen to the voice of the people and avoid the mistakes he said were made by the MB.
Karim Abdel Rady, researcher at the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information, and Mokhtar Mounir, the head of Journalists Against Torture told The Cairo Post in a March interview that they anticipate that the “crackdown on freedoms will increase after the presidential elections,” with the “current clampdown on human rights” being an indicator.
“The next parliament, however, will partake in shaping the upcoming stage. It is uncertain how it will look like with the Nour Party and former members of the National Democratic Party intending to run,” Rady said.
Hundreds have been killed and thousands have been detained since the ouster of Islamist Morsi in July 2013. Moreover, dozens of military and police personnel, as well as civilians have been killed in militant attacks launched by Sinai-based Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis and other extremist groups.
The election was planned to be held from May 26-27, but HPEC announced late May 27 that the election would continue for a third day, citing Egyptians who could not vote because they live away from their registered residence.
In protest of the decision, Sabbahi withdrew all his delegates from polling stations nationwide. None of his representatives attended the counting. HPEC also declined his appeal to exclude the votes of the third day of the presidential election.
The Twitter account associated with Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis sent a warning Friday to Egyptians: “There will be a decisive battle between faith and disbelief if Sisi continues to rule Egypt.”
In the first round of the 2012 presidential election, 13 candidates were competing with each other. Sabbahi won the majority of votes in Cairo, Alexandria and three other governorates out of Egypt’s 27 governorates. He ranked third after former President Morsi and former Prime Minister Ahmed Shafiq with 20.7 percent of the vote (4,820,273 votes).
A total of 47 percent of registered voters cast their votes in the 2012 presidential election.