Sunday, January 19, 2014

More than one third of Egyptians voted for the Constitution

More than 98 percent of voters backed the new Egyptian constitution in a referendum this week, authorities said on Saturday. The results reminds us of the old days of Mubarak, who used to win elections with similar results.  The turnout, however, was below 40%, lower than some officials had expected.
The vote advances a transition plan that army chief General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi unveiled after deposing Islamist president Mohamed Morsi last July following mass protests against his rule. The remaining two stages of this road map are presidential and parliamentary elections.
The "yes" vote was 98.1 percent, and 38.6 percent of eligible voters took part, the head of the Election Committee, Nabil Salib, told reporters. Although below 40% the turnout exceeded the 32.9 percent turnout in a referendum that backed the previous Islamist-tinged constitution under Mursi in 2012.
The new constitution could lead to an outright ban on Islamist parties and strengthens the political grip of the already powerful military establishment.

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