Voting in Egypt's parliamentary elections to begin 21 March

Ahram Online , Thursday 8 Jan 2015

Voting will be completed in two phases, with expats to be the first to line up at the polls

An Egyptian man fills in his ballot
An Egyptian man fills in his ballot at a polling station during the runoff of the parliamentary elections in Cairo December 5, 2010 (Photo: Reuters)

Egypt's top election committee said on Thursday that parliamentary elections will take place in two stages in March and April, thus marking the completion of the third and last step in a political roadmap set forth after the ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi in 2013.

Head of the Higher Elections Committee (HEC), Ayman Abbas said the first stage of the vote will take place 21-22 March for expats and 22-23 for residents in Egypt.

The second stage takes place on 25-26 April for expats and 26-27 April for Egypt residents.

Fourteen Egyptian governorates will vote in the first stage, while 11 governorates, including the capital Cairo, cast their ballots in the second stage.

In case a runoff vote is needed, it will take place from 31 March-2 April for the first stage and 5-7 May for the second stage.

An estimated 54 million Egyptians are registered voters and eligible to vote in the coming poll.

In a presser Thursday, Abbas said further details about NGO monitoring and media coverage will be announced within 30 days and published in the official gazette.

Egypt's new parliament will include 567 MPs, with 420 independents and 120 party-based deputies. The president will appoint 27 MPs.

The announcement of a timetable for parliamentary polls puts into effect the third part of a political roadmap adopted since the ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi. The first two parts included approving a new constitution last January and electing a new president last May.

The president holds all legislative powers until an elected parliament convenes. 

The parliamentary elections law, passed in June, was criticised by numerous parties for allocating nearly 80 percent of parliamentary seats to individual candidates. 

Political groups said this would recreate the political environment that allowed Hosni Mubarak’s now-dissolved National Democratic Party to manipulate political power.

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