Egypt to consider COMESA recommendations on election: Loza

CAIRO – 29 March 2018: Deputy Foreign Minister Hamdy Sanad Loza assured Thursday that Egypt welcomes the recommendations presented by the missions of regional and international organizations which followed up the presidential elections.

He added that the National Election Authority (NEA) will consider these recommendations seriously to benefit from them in upcoming elections.

He hailed the report of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) about the presidential election.

Hop Kvingeri, head of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA)’s mission to monitor the 2018 presidential election, praised the National Election Authority (NEA) for conducting the election honorably.

During a press conference held on Thursday, Kvingeri applauded the great role fulfilled by the judges in monitoring the election professionally; referring that the mission toured the polling stations and has not noticed any irregularities.

She expressed her greetings to the security forces, who highly secured the presidential election during a sensitive period.

She further remarked that holding the election in three days has allowed Egyptians to participate in the election, praising women’s broad participation in the election
Loza confirmed that the COMESA mission asserted the Egyptian elections’ credibility.

He said that the report issued by the international missions was an initial one, since final reports are issued only after the Supreme Electoral Commission announces the official results of the voting process.

“The mission was impressed by the ceremonial aspects that accompanied Egyptians while voting, including the music played in the streets and the manifestations of joy among Egyptians in contrast to the electoral process in other countries, which are dominated by acts of violence,” he concluded.

“Egypt’s presidential election is the best election that has ever been done, in terms of integrity and commitment to the international standards of the electoral process,” Adel bin Abdul Rahman al-Asoumi, deputy speaker of the Arab Parliament, also said.

In a press conference held on Thursday, Asoumi added that the electoral process was not marred with any negative remarks from the organizations that were monitoring the election.

He further said that the parliamentary delegation that was sent to follow up on the Egyptian election was composed of 14 Parliament members from 12 Arab countries. He added that they inspected 453 committees in four governorates, and prepared a preliminary report on the electoral process. “The final report will be submitted to the National Election Authority (NEA).”

Assoumi concluded by congratulating the Egyptian people on the success of the election, noting that the cooperation of the Egyptian officials with the parliamentary delegation is ongoing.

Egypt’s presidential election, which took place between March 26 and 28, recorded a considerably high turnout of 40 percent; around 24 million people cast their votes nationwide over the last three days.

The 2018 presidential election witnessed a competition between only two candidates: incumbent President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi and head of the el-Ghad Party Moussa Moustafa Moussa.

With the election looming, Sisi publicly called for record voter participation in an effort to boost the election’s legitimacy. Turnout was moderate with relatively long queues outside polling stations, most of them elderly and female. Media outlets released several photos of women standing in lines waiting to cast their ballots. Other pictures and videos showed them dancing in front of polling stations and raising the Egyptian flag, along with pictures of President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi.

Media figures, officials and actors have all called on Egyptians to partake in the election, calling it a national duty. Many of them went on to highlight that even if people disagree with the country’s current situation, they should look beyond their personal grievances for the country’s best interest.

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