Presidential hopeful Khairat El-Shater has filed his recommendation forms at the Supreme Presidential Electoral Commission (SPEC) in order to be placed on Egypt's presidential ballot as the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) candidate.
On Thursday, tens of thousands of El-Shater supporters gathered at the SPEC to back the FJP's official candidate. From Muslim Brotherhood members to FJP MPS, the crowd came from all over Egypt in support for El-Shater, chanting "God is great."
El-Shater had to enter the Commission by the back door because of the crowds, who created human chains down Orouba Street where the building is located. A similar scene took place when Salafist favourite Hazem Abu Ismail filed his recommendations forms last Friday.
El-Shater is a Brotherhood leader and multimillionaire businessman. He has emerged as the Brotherhood’s most powerful figure since the Nasser regime’s 1954 crackdown on the group.
In 1992, El-Shater was arrested and accused of money laundering in a case known as "Salsabeel," the name of a computer information systems company which he founded together with Brotherhood member Hassan Malek.
In 2006, El-Shater was again accused of money laundering and of funding the then-banned Muslim Brotherhood group.
His case was referred to military prosecution, which sentenced him in 2008 to seven years in prison. He was only released four years later, after the ouster of Mubarak in February 2011, on health grounds.