The first statement of the Integrity Coalition to monitor the presidential elections
High turnout in the governorates of Cairo, Sharkia and Alexandria, and average in the rest of the governorates
The voting stage for Egyptians in the governorates of the Republic officially started, and polling stations opened their doors at 9:00 am today, Monday, March 26, and is scheduled to continue for a period of three days until March 28. The medical and security services were organized in front of the headquarters of the committees, amid a good deployment of the army and police forces entrusted with securing the voters and the headquarters of the committees, in order to facilitate the process of Egyptians casting their votes.
This year, the National Elections Commission is responsible for fully supervising the electoral process, through judicial supervision of 18,000 and 620 judges, among its judges, members of the Public and Administrative Prosecution, the State Cases Commission and the State Council. The number of electoral commission headquarters is 13,000, 706 electoral committees, and general committees are 367 committees. It is reported that the total number of registered voters 59 million 78 thousand and 138 voters are those who have the right to vote and participate in the electoral process.
The Integrity Coalition, which is made up of the organizations: Maat for Peace, Development and Human Rights (Egypt), Volunteers Without Borders (Lebanon), and Ecumenism for Human Rights (Switzerland), monitors the electoral process through a central operations room and a group of international follow-up teams, in addition to A large number of field followers spread across thirteen Egyptian governorates, which is the number of governorates that the Integrity Coalition monitors. International delegations travel between the different governorates to monitor the election environment, and find out whether the electoral process is transparent and fair.
Since the early hours of this morning, some governorates have witnessed an intense turnout of citizens for the polling stations, especially in the Cairo, Eastern and Alexandria governorates, which witnessed the influx of voters since early morning, and many of their committees witnessed greater participation by women, which is due to the polling days this year. It is not considered a public holiday, and therefore the numbers are expected to rise further after the employees finish their work by the end of the day.
Nazaha’s coalition monitored a number of observations through their presence in a number of election centers. In Qaliubiya, the coalition’s followers praised the judges ’cooperation in order to facilitate the electoral process, and a large number of voters flocked to a number of committees affiliated with the Shubra al-Khaimah Department, the first among them“ Shubra al-Khaimah School ” Industrial Girls, Khalid Bin Al Waleed Preparatory School, Asma Preparatory Girls School.
In the governorate of Faiyum, a delegation from the Integrity Coalition visited a number of polling stations in the city of Fayoum, and saw a different number of peaceful rallies in support of the candidate Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, in front of each of the Fayoum Secondary School for Girls “Committee P 8 P12 located in Al-Hawadim in front of the headquarters of the Educational Administration West of Al-Fayoum ”, and the Muhammad Sabri Al-Bakbashi School / Committee 8F.
On the other hand, the field team of Maat Foundation, which numbered 40 field observers in each governorate, continued the work of monitoring and following up the electoral process, and while the early hours of this morning witnessed a smooth flow in the voting process, but there are a number of observations among them. A number of committees were late for the opening on time, including the committee of Basyoun Preparatory School for Girls, Babasyon in the Gharbia governorate, and Committee 1 in the Al Hamoul Preparatory School for Boys in Hamoul, Kafr El Sheikh Governorate.
A number of local observers faced some difficulties in Minya governorate, represented in the delay of a number of observers from entering the committees despite holding the permits of the National Elections Commission. In Minya, Professor Tariq Sayed Muhammad was suspended from entering the Electoral Commission No. 14 of Muhammad Waheed Habashi Secondary School for Girls By the insurance forces, under the pretext that the Maat Foundation is not included in their follow-up lists, even though the observer carries a follow-up card from the National Elections Authority, and the name of the Maat Foundation is written on it. And contact with the National Elections Authority to solve this problem.
The electoral propaganda for candidate Abdel Fattah al-Sisi spread in front of many electoral commissions, while loudspeakers spread calling for citizens to participate in the vote, as was the case in the Basyoun Center in the Gharbia governorate, specifically in the committee in the Religious Institute of Basion and the Tahrir Elementary School in Basion. Meanwhile, some streets near the electoral commissions in Cairo Governorate witnessed citizens playing songs, dancing and chanting for President El-Sisi at the famous "hands in hand". This is in violation of the rules of electoral silence.
Observers asserted that there was a commitment from the state apparatus to impartiality and that judges are committed to all the rules of transparency and integrity, and that all tools related to the electoral process are available within the subcommittees.
The observers emphasized that the voters also adhere to all the rules that help to smooth the casting of the vote. The followers indicated that the largest number of voters were women and the elderly, due to the fact that today is a working day and not a day off.
The Integrity team and all field observers of the Maat Foundation continue to monitor and evaluate the electoral process to determine the neutrality of the state apparatus towards the voting process, as well as to monitor the positives and negatives about the electoral process, to ensure the availability of the principles of integrity and freedom in the 2018 Egyptian presidential elections.
The Integrity Coalition calls for the National Elections Authority officials to quickly communicate with observers to resolve their complaints, in addition to the need for the commission to intervene to stop the offending propaganda and use loudspeakers in front of voting centers, which may mar the voting process or affect the voters.