Revolution Continues Alliance launches its electoral bid

Mostafa Ali, Wednesday 2 Nov 2011

The Revolution Continues Alliance kicked off its electoral campaign Wednesday with a manifesto based on fighting for the ideals of the revolution and freedom of expression; youth, women and Copts

The Popular Socialist Alliance Party celebrates gaining official recognition in a street party in October (Photo: Reuters)

The Revolution Continues Alliance (RCA) launched its parliamentary election campaign Wednesday during a press conference at the Journalists’ Syndicate in downtown Cairo.

Spokespeople for the left-leaning alliance briefed reporters on the number of electoral lists and candidates they are fielding in the parliamentary elections that are set to kick off on 28 November.

The alliance includes the Popular Socialist Alliance Party, the Egyptian Current Party, the Revolution Youth Coalition, the Egyptian Socialist Party, the Egyptian Alliance Party, and the Equality and Development Party.

Islam Lotfi, a founding member of the Egyptian Alliance party, moderated the press conference.

Lotfi announced that the RCA is running a total of 268 candidates along the following lines: 34 electoral lists for the (lower house) People’s Assembly, 26 candidates for individual seats for the People’s Assembly, and eight lists for the (upper house) Shura Council.

Of its candidates, the RCA has put forward 100 contestants under the age of 40 to stand in the elections' representing a generation that started the January 25th revolution.

RCA is also fielding a number of women as candidates and has already placed two women at the head of its electoral lists.

RCA lists will also include a number of Copts such as Shahir George, the son of the renowned Egyptian rights activist George Ishaq.

Several young RCA candidates introduced themselves and their campaign themes to reporters in attendance.

Mohamed Gamal, who, at 25 years and 11 days, is the youngest parliamentary candidate, will be standing for a seat in the People’s Assembly in the Upper Egypt governorate of Minya.

Gamal said that though his generation has fought to bring down an autocratic regime, it must continue the fight to cleanse all social institutions of corruption and injustice.

Mervat Said Hanafi, a clerk at a military factory and a veteran trade unionist, said that she will be running as part of the RCA as a member of the Equality and Development party in the industrial region of Helwan, south of Cairo.

“I am proud to run as a woman in the elections, and I plan to fight for ordinary citizens and to complete this revolution,” Hanafi told reporters.

The RCA has chosen three slogans as centrepieces of its electoral campaign: Security, Freedom and Justice.

The Alliance’s platform will focus on issues of redistribution of wealth in order to narrow the gap between the rich and the poor, a democratic form of government with full equality for women and religious minorities, full freedom of expression and assembly and a foreign policy which ends Egypt's dependence on the United States.

Lotfi told reporters that he wants to see Egypt become a strong political and economic player in the region over in the coming few years.

“Turkey built a democratic system and a strong economy. Both these accomplishments allowed it to become a regional power. Dictatorship gets you nowhere. Democracy will allow our country to meet its potential as a leader on a global level,” Lotfi said.

The RCA will be hitting the ground in earnest in the coming few days with mass district meetings and publicity tours planned as part of its campaigning ahead of the elections.

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