Egypt's Armed Forces prepare for securing the public referendum on the constitutional amendments- press photo
CAIRO – 18 April 2019: Ahead of Egypt’s public referendum on constitutional amendments due on April 21, armed and security forces were deployed in vital places nationwide to secure the voting process, according to statements issued by the ministries of defense and interior on Thursday.
Upon directions from Minister of Defense and Military Production Mohamed Zaki, the Armed Forces leadership has taken all procedures, in cooperation with the Ministry of Interior, to secure polling stations and all institutions affiliated to the Ministry of Defense, the statement said.
“All procedures have been taken to monitor and secure the referendum in all governorates via using surveillance aircraft, aerial photography and outside broadcasting vehicles to convey a vivid picture of the events and to immediately report any actions that impede the polling process to the Armed Forces’ operation room,” the statement read.
The Second Field Army forces will be responsible for securing governorates of Dakahlia, Sharqia, Damietta, Ismailia, Port Said, North Sinai, while forces of the Third Field Army will participate in securing Suez, South Sinai, Qena governorates, the statement added.
Forces of the Cairo-based Central Military Region will participate in securing Cairo, Giza, Menoufia, Qalyoubia, Fayoum, Beni Suef, and Minya. Meanwhile, the Western Military Region will secure the polling process in Matrouh governorate.
As for Alexandria, Beheira, Kafr al-Sheih, they will be secured by Northern Military Region forces. Moreover, forces of the Southern Military Region will cover Assyut, Sohag, Luxor, Aswan, Al-Wadi al-Gadid, and the Red Sea, the statement continued. Naval and air forces will also participate in the security process during the vote.
Furthermore, Ministry of Interior announced high security alert nationwide and deployed security forces inside the polling stations and outside the State’s vital institutions.
A total of 61 million eligible voters were urged to cast their ballots in the public referendum on the constitutional amendments, which will allow President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi to remain in power until 2030. Egypt’s House of Representative (the lower house of the Parliament) approved on Tuesday the new amendments.
The amendments include a “transitional article” that allows President Sisi to remain in power until 2024; Sisi will also have the right to run for a new 6-year term.
“The current president has the right at the end of his current term to re-run as stated in the amended Article 140 of the constitution,” the transitional article stipulates.
Article 140 provides that the presidential term shall be extended for 6 years instead of 4 years and the president has the right to run for another term.
CAIRO - 16 April 2019: The parliamentary legislative subcommittee, headed by Parliament Speaker Ali Abdel Aal, approved on Sunday a set of proposed constitutional amendments paving the way for the Parliament to hold a final vote on them on Tuesday.