Egypt's elections authority sets rules for opinion polls related to presidential elections

Ahram Online , Tuesday 23 Jan 2018

The National Elections Authority has listed a range of information that must be provided along with any published polls relating to the upcoming presidential elections

File Photo: A woman casts her ballot in the final stage of a referendum on Egypt's new constitution in Cairo, January 15, 2014 (Mai Shaheen)

Egypt's National Elections Authority (NEA) has established 10 regulations for media institutions regarding the conducting of opinion polls related to the upcoming presidential elections, which are scheduled for 26, 27 and 28 March.

In a statement reported by Al-Ahram Arabic website, the NEA said that any poll related to the presidential elections should maintain certain standards for publishing or broadcast, with the following information being provided:

- All available information about the entity that conducted the poll;

- The entity that financed the poll;

- The size of the sample to which the questions were addressed and its location, whether in urban or rural areas;

- The method of conducting the poll;

- The questions included;

- The method of data collection;

- The date on which the poll was conducted;

- The percentage of potential error;

- The degree of applying weight variables in statistical analysis.

The NEA also prohibited the publishing or broadcasting of any opinion polls during the five days preceding the day of voting, up to the end of the voting period.

On Monday, Egypt's National Press Authority (NPA) said it is to discuss with the CEOs and chief editors of national newspapers a draft outline on professional press coverage of the country's upcoming presidential election.

The NPA also stressed the right of journalists to attend all meetings, conferences and events related to the elections process, and affirmed journalists' right to freedom of operation and expression without any predetermined restrictions and within existing laws and regulations.

Egypt's presidential elections are scheduled to start nationwide on 26-28 March, with runs-offs, if they are to take place, scheduled for 24-26 April.

On 31 January, the NEA will publish the preliminary list of candidates in the state-owned Al-Ahram and Al-Akhbar newspapers.

If no run-offs are necessary, the winner will be announced on 2 April.

President Abel-Fattah El-Sisi, whose current first presidential term will end in June, won the 2014 presidential elections in a two-man race over leftist figure Hamdeen Sabahi with nearly 97 percent of the vote.

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