Egyptian presidential candidates choose symbols for May vote

Ahram Online , Tuesday 24 Apr 2012

Presidential candidate Moussa will be a sun, Abul-Fotouh will be a horse, Sabbahi wanted an eagle, and Ali asked to be a tree; Ahmed Shafiq took a ladder but might not reach the top

Egypt election
A man casts his vote at Shubra in El-Kalubia, on the outskirts of Cairo in parliament elections last winter (photo: Reuters)

A group of presidential candidates have chosen their voting-symbols today from 15 different emblems offered to them by the Supreme Presidential Electoral Committee (SPEC).

Candidates are identified on voting ballots by symbols, to facilitate voting for illiterate Egyptians who comprise more than 40 per cent of the country's 50 million-plus eligible voters.

The liberal-Islamist candidate Abdel-Moneim Abul-Fotouh has chosen a horse symbol. Islamic thinker Mohamed Selim El-Awa  picked an umbrella symbol.

The former head of the Arab League Amr Moussa has opted for a sun voting-symbol.

The Muslim Brotherhood's candidate and head of its Freedom and Justice party, Mohamed Morsi, has picked a weighing scales voting-symbol.

Meanwhile, both the Nasserist candidate Hamdeen Sabbahi and the leftist candidate Khaled Ali have declined the voting-symbols available on the SPEC's roster and each has chosen a different one, and are waiting for the SPEC 's reply to their requests.

Sabbahi has requested an eagle and Ali has requested a tree.

Meanwhile, Mubarak's former prime minister Ahmed Shafiq , who potentially faces elimination after the passage of a new law disenfranching top officials from the ousted regime, has chosen a ladder symbol.

Presidential elections will take place over two days, 23 and 24 May, and the president will be named on 21 June after a runoff voting round on 16 and 17 June.

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