Monday, November 28, 2011

#Elections : Egyptians vote "Day 1"

Google Egypt’s doodle
And the voting process have started in 9 governorates in Egypt.
Google doodles vote in Egypt
Huge turnout in Cairo despite the cold weather , huge and early turnout as people started to stand in long queues even before the polling stations would open its doors and the judges did not reach the stations. The queues are overwhelming in Cairo. Hundreds standing in front of polling stations waiting for their return in what could be the highest turnout for elections in the history of Egypt. “Hopefully insh Allah”
Here are photos from Cairo and outside it.
“By Ahmed Abdullah in Qasr Al Nil@7:52AM

In Zamalek @7:52 AM by Jon Jensen
In Zamalek @ 8AM by Nagla Rezk

Here is a photo from Port Said in the early morning.
By Ahmed El Gawy
It is 9:32 AM now and most complains or violations are the delay of the judges to come to the polling stations , some polling stations have not opened its doors yet and some candidates are still campaigning especially the Freedom and Justice part that is distributing flyers outside the polling stations.
The Muslim brotherhood has fired back quickly on twitter saying that the flyers being distributed are lists of the candidates only and that this is not illegal.
According to the law campaigning is stopped before the elections by 48 hours as far as I know.
Here is a photo from Tahrir square at 9 AM CLT by Omnia Khalil 
Tahrir square at 9 AM by Omnia Khalil

23,000 observers are following the elections out of 25,000

@10:07 AM CLT

This time there are blue finger and violet finger not a pink finger.
This turnout with all the reported violations so far shows you the gap between the Egyptian twitter world and the Egyptians.
Amr Moussa is standing in a long queue to vote in Nasr City Constituency by Mohamed Ibrahim aka Za3eiry
Amr Moussa in New Cairo
Up till now no violent clashes have been reported.
By the way the day is not over despite it is promising start.

@11:36 AM CLT

Egyptians wait for their turn to vote
News that thugs are terrifying women voters in Al Zawya Al Hamara.

@11:48 AM CLT

According to Al Hayat news 74 polling stations in Kafr El Sheikh have not opened its doors yet because the judges are not there yet !!
People are waiting for hours now in queues in front of polling stations so far to vote.
The candidates are still distributing promotional flyers at the polling stations in different areas especially the Muslim brotherhood and their affiliated party Freedom party.
Here is one of the MB's flyers by dear friend Omnia Douski
The F&J electoral list by Omnia Douski

Candidates’ flyers by Donya Hassan

@12:43 PM CLT

The high commission for elections decided to extend the voting process till after 7 PM in the polling stations opened late. Also if the ballot papers are not stamps then they should be signed by the judges in the committees. The queues are extremely long up till now. There are polling stations facing terrible mainly from the delay of the judges , logistic problems concerning the ballot papers.
The street vendors as well as cafe chains found a golden mine in the long queues in front of polling stations. Wael Abbas reported that street vendors are selling food and tea to the people standing in the queues waiting to cast their votes.
Cilantro Cafe in Zamalek is taking orders from voters as well waiting in a long queue.
By Taya El Zayadi
Al Nour Salafist party is reportedly having a tent outside one of the polling station where they prepare tea fro the voters !!
The complaints from F&J campaigning activity outside the polling stations are wide spread whether in Cairo or outside it yet according to friends in Mokktam and in Zamalek in Cairo , they are not the sole party that is distributing flyers outside the polling station.
Here is a flyer for Al Wafd's Nihal Ahady from Talaat Harb polling station
Nihal Ahady's flyer by Yara Kassem

@3:00 PM CLT

Dr. Abdel Moneim Abu El Fatouh went to the polling station and voted in Nasr City.
Abdel Moneim Abu El Fatouh after casting his vote
Here are couple of photos from governorates
From Alexandria , a men's polling station "Erin Cunningham"
From Damietta
Army securing a polling station in Damietta by RNN
Here is a video from Alexandria by RNN

@3:50 PM CLT

Women voters in Cairo by Lamis
Old ladies waiting for their turn by Lamis
Here is video showing women voters in Zamalek standing in a queue that extended for 4 streets.
Zamalek : Women’s queue
Old ladies have voted for the first time in their lives today ,we are speaking about 80 years old ladies outside Cairo. Here is Rawya Rageh with an old lady called Mayza Labib from Assuit who voted for the first time in her life.
Rawya Rageh with Mayza Labib from Assuit
Speaking about old ladies , this lady from Damietta.
In Damietta 
and old men as well.
Helping the elderly 
Of course the army has to enhance their image after what happened in Tahrir square on November 20 ,2011 , remember the the army soldier that pulled a girl’s hair.
Nevertheless many people reported that the army soldiers and policemen treated them nice in most polling stations. The military police and police solider had to disperse a protest of voters using electric rods in Manshiat Nasr. There was a small tension in Assuit but it turned out to be caused by a rejected candidate
According to estimations today about 17 million Egyptians have voted today in 9 governorates. I believe those millions supported the revolution and enforced it by the ballot boxes , they want to get rid from military rule in their own way through democratic transition regardless of what you think about their way. I believe this turnout was a surprise to everybody including SCAF themselves. The bad organization is a an evidence of this lack of expectation
There were violations mostly related to the bad organization so.

@6:15 PM CLT

Voting is extended to 9 PM , now people are having concerns about the ballot boxes that will spend the night in the polling stations.
The results of the single seats will be announced by the end of the first stage while the lists seats will be announced by the end of the elections. Of course the results of the first stage will determine a lot of things.
There is no doubt that the Muslim brotherhood’s F&J will win a lot of vote because simply they are more known to the people than other parties aside of course the use of religion. The elections for sure showed the rivalry between F&J , Nour party and Wasat party as well other parties.
Now regarding violations let it be clear here everybody has violated the law by a way or another but as the Muslim brotherhood as the most spread , most organized and most under the eye party now their violations were much more clearer.
Here is a video showing Sobhi Saleh , the famous and outspoken MB member in Alexandria being kicked from a women’s polling station by the none other than the voters , our women from Alexandria.

The Muslim brotherhood accused Amr Hamzawy of trying to bribe the voters and he denied accusing them by violations by return. Here is a video showing a lady allegedly kicked out a lady from the polling station. That lady was accused by the judge of bribing the protesters.
Heliopolis : Violations by Amr Hamzawy’s alleged volunteer
Now Hamzawy issued a statement about violations  in the Heliopolis Constituency.
The Wasat party accused the F&J party of leaking the the ballot papers in one of the polling stations in Cairo , they even filed a report about the MB’s party. The Wasat party is not innocent itself  , here is a kiosk they installed in front of the polling station in Damietta promoting for Wasat party. “Photo by Mohamed Mazhar
Al Wasat Kiosk 
Essam Sultan is the candidate of Damietta as you can see.
It is not only the Wasat party that violated the campaigning rules as far as I see ,  Al Masryeen Ahrar violated it too. Here is a photo for a simple gift they distributed at Damietta , at one of the polling stations “Sheikh Dargham” by Mohamed Mansour
Al Masryeen Al Ahrar's gifts
I found this photo online showing volunteers from Egyptian Bloc distributing flyers at the polling station.
Egyptian bloc flyers 
I think we should know now the limits of parliamentary campaigning for real.
Here is an interesting photo from Heliopolis this morning at women’s polling station by Heba Abou El Eid
Waiting to vote in Nasr City
Here is another video showing the queues at Nasr City.
Cairo : At Nasr City elections 2011
You can see in video members of F&J with laptops and lists , these guys help the voters to find their committees as part of their services today. This photo from Gamal Abdel Nasser School at New Cairo by Dr. Ehab Mesallum
Freedom and justice's free service : Know your polling station
SCAF General Mohamed EL Assar says that this is the first democratic elections from 60 years , those 60 years of course are the military rule in Egypt.
I do not know why women and men are separated now , women got their own polling stations and men got theirs !!

@8:38 CLT PM

Here is a video from Port Said from Al Masry AlYoum
Port Said : Al Masry Al Youm’s video report
According to early estimations from the internet and TV shows :
  • 55% voted in Damietta.
  • 11% voted in Red Sea
  • 70 % voted in Asuit
  • 28% of violations were in Cairo
Damietta did not record any single theft or law violation according to the head of security directorate. It is the first time in Damietta since 1973 war.
Ambassador Patterson praised the Egyptian elections urging Egyptians to vote.
Ambassador Patterson: “The message is: Go out and vote. Go out and vote." #egyelectionsMon Nov 28 17:45:18 via HootSuite
I think there are members of Congress currently in Cairo who visited polling stations today.

@10:03 PM CLT

Cairo governor will vote tomorrow because he could not vote today.
And Ahmed Shafik voted today and praised El Ganzoury
The Return of Shafik 
Now as everybody is picking on the Muslim brotherhood and their Freedom and Justice party for the violations they committed at the polling stations and ignoring another parties which actually unfair for me.
Yesterday early today Ahram portal published an extremely dangerous violation committed by an official authority. The Egyptian hotel association issued an official notification to its employees and workers as well those who work in tourism industry to vote for the Egyptian bloc candidates in the elections in Fayoum , Red Sea, Luxor and Port Said because these candidates are supportive to the sector.
The names of the candidates
The statement issued from the Egyptian hotel association
I do understand why the Egyptian hotel association issued this statement , the fear from Islamists especially the Salafists who got some presence in Luxor as well as Red Sea surprisingly. The hoteliers are supporting Sameh Makarm Ebeid in Red Sea to stop the Salafists and the Nour party. Still this is a dangerous action from a governmental authority.
Anyhow here are the voters in Red Sea from RNN
Inside the polling station by RNN

I know some called liberal powers “actually secular can’t stomach Islamists” will support this despite it is a clear violation to the law !! I am ready to have laws that protect tourism than this violations to the elections law and clear bias.
Amazingly the woman who survived Mubarak’s regime , a revolution and three cabinets so far Faiza Abu El Naga casted her vote in Zamalek and not in Port Said where she ran for the parliament last year !!
Speaking about ministers or former ministers here is Gouda Abdel Khalek of Social solidarity
Former Essam Sharaf has tweeted the following today :

من اجل هذا اليوم تحملت ما لا يطاق... اشكر الشعب الذي انجح الانتخاب.Mon Nov 28 15:19:30 via web
For this day I had to bare what nobody could stand . I thank the people who made the elections work.

@11:07 PM CLT

The popular committees are protecting the polling stations in Maadi.
Protecting the polling stations
And the Freedom and Justice party has issued its third statement about the first day of the elections. 
Good night folks


  1. Sudanese Observer11/28/2011 03:55:00 PM


  2. Friend from Germany11/28/2011 06:27:00 PM

    Regardless of the circumstances, this is a quantum leap for Egypt. For the first time a parliamentary election where each vote is meaningful.

    Congratulations! Egypt can do!

  3. What's the point of having rules and guidelines if you don't penalizing those violating them?
    MB handing out flyers among others things....
    Salafists telling people not to vote for El Kotla because they're "infidels"....

    This is chaos in my eyes and I'm sure in the eyes of outsiders. It doesn't look as legitimate as Tunis's election did.

  4. @np: At least the distribution of flyers was stopped by SEC and tents of MB torn down.

    However, the US Ambassador should stay out of our elections. We will never forget how the USA fostered and supported Mubarak at the expense of the Egyptian people.

  5. thank you Z as always a great report!!! am happy to see for the first time Egyptians are happy and going to vote freely.

  6. "We are all Khaled Said" says: Today was a historic day for Egypt. Millions of Egyptians stood in long queues in difficult weather conditions to vote in the first free elections in 60 years.

    They are wrong: It is Egypt's very first free elections ever, because before 1952 the country was ruled either by incompetent Royalty, by Ottoman invaders, Roman conquerors and ... well ... very old Pharaohs.

  7. Egyptian Chronicles reader for 5 years11/29/2011 04:49:00 PM

    Z, I would like to express my gratitude to your blog which played a part in getting us to this point.

  8. Dear Egyptian Chronicles read , your comment has made me cry , I am the one who should express her gratitude to you for reading my blog
    I hope you continue reading my blog insh Allah for the next 50 years :D


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