Egypt election: Sisi 'set to win second term as president'

A woman prepares to vote during the second day of the presidential election at a polling station in Cairo

A woman prepares to vote during the second day of the presidential election at a polling station in Cairo

Initial results of Egypt's presidential elections show that incumbent President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi is securing an overwhelming majority, with a vote share of around 90 percent, Ahram Arabic and state news agency MENA reported.

El-Sisi's opposing candidate, Mousa Mostafa Mousa, a little-known contender who entered the presidential race hours just before the nomination deadline, received 721,000 votes, according to al-Ahram.

Almost 60 million Egyptians were eligible to vote at some 13,700 polling centers.

The newspaper confirmed the percentage of "about 92%" of votes for Sisi. His sole opponent in the current election, Moussa Mostafa Moussa, was claimed by many to be a "dummy" candidate and was viewed as the government's effort to maintain the appearance of democracy.

The Egyptian administration has endeavoured to underpin political legitimation of Al-Sisi without shadow of high abstention, in face of appeals of opposition sectors to boycott elections.

The day before, the three-day presidential election voting marathon was completed in Egypt.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi votes in Cairo
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi votes in Cairo

El-Sissi came to power in 2014, a year after he led the overthrow of the country's first democratically elected - but divisive - president Mohammed Morsi.

"The voice of the Egyptian masses will undoubtedly bear witness to the fact that our nation's will imposes itself with a force that knows no weakness", el-Sisi said on Twitter. The official results will be announced by the National Election Authority (NEA) on April 2.

Tuk-tuks drove voters to cast their ballots and after returning to the office they were reportedly given payments of 50 pounds or two pound sterling.

Megahed went on explaining that the cases were either standing in the voter queues or inside the polling stations, where a lot of them suffered high blood pressure, fever, drop in blood sugar rate, circulatory collapse, or gastrointestinal, foot and back pain. A Western diplomat said that late on Tuesday, turnout was between 15 and 20 per cent, with around 30 per cent in some centres on Wednesday.

Egyptian authorities and media outlets have tried to garner as many votes as possible, telling voters it is their duty, and portraying a failure to vote as betrayal of their country.

At some polling stations, voters were granted free meals.

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