CAIRO: The Military Media Center will monitor security during the parliamentary elections, and several “psychological and moral work crews” will be deployed to “participate in raising the awareness of citizens” to vote in poll, according to a Friday military statement.
The statement did not clarify where the said crews belong to, but the Military Media Center is affiliated with the Morale Department of the Armed Forces. The electoral silence period began midday on Friday, where electoral campaigns must stop, but the law does not stipulate that efforts to persuade citizens to vote are prohibited.
The turnout of the runoff of the first phase of the elections reached 21.7 percent, down from 26.56 percent in the first round, head of the High Election Committee (HEC) Ayman Abbas said in a press conference Oct 30.
The relatively low turnout raised controversy in Egypt over the abstaining of citizens compared to previous elections.
The statement also said that more than 160,000 soldiers have been deployed to secure the second phase of parliamentary elections with over 28.2 million registered voters in 13 governorates, adding that its personnel have been trained to deal with emergencies interrupting the survey.
The air forces will also partake in the process by aerial monitoring and reporting a live image of the situation to the military’s operations room, according to the statement.
A total of 222 independent parliamentary seats will be available in the second phase, with 2,847 candidates competing in 102 constituencies, the HEC announced earlier this month.
Results of the first phase of Egypt’s parliamentary elections indicated a landslide victory of the For the Love of Egypt’s electoral list, which won 60 seats in Upper Egypt and East Delta constituencies.