CAIRO: An electoral alliance loyal to Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has dominated the parliamentary election, the election committee said on Friday, a vote critics said took place against a backdrop of widespread repression.
“For the Love of Egypt”, a loyalist electoral alliance led by a former intelligence officer, will enter parliament with all 120 seats allocated to winner-takes-all lists.
The election, hailed by Sisi as the climax of the military’s roadmap to democracy, took place in 13 provinces and had a turnout of about 28 percent, the election committee announced.
Critics said the vote, which took place in October and November after a gap of more than three years, was undermined by a heavy security crackdown on Islamist and other political opposition elements in Egypt.
The new parliament will contain 568 elected members – 448 elected on an individual basis and 120 through the winner-take-all lists that have all gone to loyalists. Sisi may appoint as many as 28 more lawmakers.
Egypt’s last parliament was elected in 2011-12, in the first free election after the popular uprising that ended autocrat Hosni Mubarak’s 30-year presidency.
Voting at that time was marked by long queues and youthful excitement. The Muslim Brotherhood, long the country’s main opposition movement, won about half the seats.
A court dissolved that parliament in mid-2012. A year later, Sisi, then military chief, removed President Mohamed Mursi of the Brotherhood from power after mass protests against his rule.
The Brotherhood, Egypt’s oldest Islamist organization, was subsequently banned, declared a terrorist organization and thousands of its members were jailed.
A list of socialist and liberal parties which would have presented the main alternative in the latest election eventually withdrew, leaving the field dominated by Sisi supporters, Mubarak-era figures, provincial notables and businessmen.