Abul-Fotouh calls for unity, Nour Party backs Morsi

Ahram Online , Friday 25 May 2012

As final results suggest a Morsi-Shafiq showdown, the independent Islamist candidate calls for Egyptians to unite against the 'corrupt former regime'

Abul-Fotouh calls for unity (Photo: Reuters)

Presidential contender Abdel Moneim Abul-Fotouh on Friday called for Egyptians to fulfill the goals of the uprising by voting in a mid-June run-off between the Muslim Brotherhood's Mohamed Morsi and former Mubarak minister Ahmed Shafiq.

Abul-Fotouh, at one point a favourite for the presidency, was trailing in fourth place as election results trickled in on Friday.

In a statement from his campaign office, the former Brotherhood member suggested he was now directing his efforts towards another goal -- confronting what he called "corrupt elements" in Egyptian society.

"I am starting to make the necessary phone calls to set up meetings with all political forces so we can unite our efforts in facing the corrupt regime," Abul-Fotouh said.

He went on to praise Egyptians for voting in the week's first free presidential elections, "especially those who supported the project for a strong Egypt presented by a simple citizen like myself."

Abul-Fotouh tipped his hat to several of his fellow candidates too, saying they had "expressed the soul of the revolution".

He called on Egyptians to take part in run-offs slated for 17 and 18 June in order to achieve the demands of the 2011 uprising.

Abul-Fotouh's request came as a member of the supreme committee of the Nour Party, Basem El-Zarqa, announced the Salafist group's full backing for Morsi.

"We initially faced some objections from some of the party's youth due to our support for Abul-Fotouh. They found the combination of different political currents confusing," El-Zarqa said.

"It is important that we all unite now against the danger of the return of Mubarak -- only this time in the form of Shafiq."           

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