FILE: Wafd Party leader El-Sayyid El-Badawi
CAIRO – 25 January 2018: Wafd Party leader El-Sayyid el-Badawi was chosen on Thursday by the party to run in the upcoming 2018 presidential election, media outlets reported.
Badawi was chosen out of three party potential candidates; namely Hani Sarie el-din and MP Mohamed Fouad.
The Wafd Party used to be one of Egypt’s most influential political parties for a period of time, especially from the end of World War I through to the 1930s. Most of the party’s leaders used to be very effective members in the Egyptian society including former Prime Minister Saad Zaghloul who led the revolution of 1919 against the British colonization of Egypt.
President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi submitted his candidacy application to the National Election Authority on Wednesday to run for a second term.
Another candidate, Khaled Ali, a lawyer, announced his withdrawal from the presidential bid on Wednesday; on January, 7, 2018, former Egyptian Prime Minister Ahmed Shafik announced that he will not run for president, explaining that he is not "the ideal person to lead the nation at the present moment."
Also, former Military Chief of Staff Sami Anan, who announced his intention to run for president, was removed from the voters’ database over charges of “forgery”.
The first round of the presidential elections in Egypt will take place between March 26 and 28, and the second round between April 24 and 28, the NEA announced in a televised statement on January 8.
Earlier today, Egypt’s National Election Authority (NEA) stated the legal grounds, upon which it removed former Military Chief of Staff Sami Anan from the voters’ database over charges of “forgery” to run for the 2018 presidential election.
Removing Anan, who is still under the military call-up service, came in accordance with the principles of the Constitution, the NEA said in a statement on Thursday. “Deleting his name from the voters’ database is a rectification of a mistake made by the administrative body to register his name in the voters’ database.”
The exclusion also was based on official documents received from the Armed Forces, per a judicial ruling from the Cairo Court for the Urgent Matters to oblige the minister of defense to submit a certificate on Anan’s military status to the NEA. On January 23, Egyptian authorities have arrested the former army chief of staff over charges of “forgery” as he “illegally” announced his intention to run for the 2018 presidential election. Anan does not have a military permission terminating his service at the Armed Forces, according to a statement from the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF).
Today also saw Egypt’s National Election Authority (NEA) denying allegations from lawyer Khaled Ali, who withdrew from the presidential race on Wednesday. Ali had described the election timeline as “unjust” and accused the authority of preventing him from receiving his endorsements signed by citizens.
The NEA authority assured in a statement on Thursday that the election timeline was set in accordance with the 2014 constitution, which stipulates that “the procedures for electing the President of the Republic begin at least 120 days before the end of the presidential term. The result is to be announced at least 30 days before the end of term.”
“The NEA materialized its vision to set the timeline of the electoral process so as to guarantee equal chances for all candidates,” the statement added.
As for the endorsements, the NEA clarified that the candidate himself or his representative is the one to submit forms of endorsements that he received from the citizens to the NEA, saying “it all depends on the candidate to shoulder the responsibility of submitting his endorsement forms to the NEA.”
As per the NEA requirements, a candidate shall submit no less than 25,000 endorsement forms signed by citizens and registered at the notaries and real estate registration offices nationwide to run for president.
During a press conference on Wednesday, Khaled Ali said that the election timeline, which is set by the ENA, is “unjust,” accusing the authority of refusing to hand him the endorsements he received from the public that support him in the presidential election due in March.