Saturday, October 24, 2020

Egypt’s parliamentary elections 2020 : Shake it to the beat

After a few hours from now, the House of Representatives elections' first stage will kick off in 10,240 polling stations will be operating in 14 governorates where 1,879 candidates are competing on the votes of nearly 33 million eligible voters.

In this stage, those candidates are fighting over 284 seats; half to the individual candidates and the other half to the party lists. 

This is the first elections after the new amendments of 2019 that brought the Upper House and Lower House to Egypt once again.

The Upper House elections aka were held in September and they recorded the lowest turnout in Egyptian elections since the March 2011 referendum “only 14.23% of the eligible voters participated in the 4 days of the Senate elections while in the runoffs attracted only 10.22%”.

We got nearly 66 million voters. The Senate elections were held when almost all Egyptians were taking vacations after months of a lockdown or simply they did not know unlike the House of Representatives’ elections.

I expect a higher turnout without a doubt but smashing turnout because we are speaking about pandemic time and less publicity and interactions with voters on the ground.

Now in the time of coronavirus, this could be the quietest elections I have seen with less noise on the ground from the usual elections campaigns.

You will know that there are elections only from the banner everywhere with the faces and names , mostly you only see once;  in the time of the elections.

The first stage's 14 governorates are Giza, Fayoum, Beni Suef, Minya, Assuit, New Valley, Sohag, Qena, Luxor, Aswan, Red Sea, Alexandria, Beheira and Marsa Matruh.

Giza is the second biggest governorate and the extension of the Egyptian capital Cairo is witnessing the clash of the titans of names from businessmen, public figures and media figures.

My constituency once “Agouza-Dokki-Imbaba” has changed into “Giza-Agouza-Dokki” according to the new Constituencies law and probably is witnessing the biggest clash of all over the individual site.

I mean we got ex-NDPian businessman tycoon and owner of Pro-regime “Sada El-Balad” TV network Mohamed Abu El-Ainein Vs. media figure MP Abdel Rahim Ali Vs. MP Ahmed Mortada Mansour “I cannot describe him anything except the son of notorious Mortada Mansour”.

Mohamed Abu El-Ainein is an old MP for Giza constituency since the days of NDP and Gamal Mubarak but now he is running in Agouza and Dokki too. I believe he is the wealthiest man running in this election technically speaking.

It was said he was running for Future of Homeland party but then it turned out that he was running independently.

Anyhow Abu El-Ainein got a very special endorsement from none other than Maharajan hit singer of 2019/2020 Hassan Shakosh.

Shakosh who made hits like controversial “the Neighbor girl” is back with a special song for Mohamed Abu El-Ainein “For the love of Egypt”

Yes, you heard the infamous trademark of “DJ Saasooooo” in that song.

To fire back support, Ahmed Mortada Mansour released a very cheesy song sang by Mahajan singer Omar Kamal. 

Yes, Kamal who is known with duo hits with Shakosh

Yes, Mortada Jr is lip syncing. FYI Omar Kamal is a Zamalek fan club supporter and I do not have to guess how they agreed on this song.

FYI, there is a court order that annulled Ahmed Mortada Mansour‘s membership in the parliament since 2016 that had not been implemented.

The court declared that Egyptian political analyst and former MP Amr El-Shobaki was the legitimate MP of Agouza, Dokki and Imbaba.

Abdel Rahim Ali also got a song. This song is dedicated to him by a young aspiring singer called Angham “another Angham”.

The lyrics of the song include this verse “Every monkey sticks to his tree” because Ali’s symbol in the elections is the lion.

Ali’s song has not gone viral though like his rival. Instead, an alleged recording of a phone call between him and his son-in-law insulting everybody in the republic has gone viral in the past 24 hours.

Abdel Rahim Ali who gained fame for airing alleged recordings of politicians and activists’ calls on TV has got a bitter taste of his own medicine. 

Earlier, Ali spoke about the use of the “political money” or money in the elections adding that he was facing the “hugest use of political money in the history of modern Egypt in the constituency”

Using music and songs for elections in Egypt is old and it is not something new. Some say that it started in the 1990s while others claim in 1980s and some others say it started decades earlier in Upper Egypt but with different folklore genres. 

Anyhow, I am trying to collect more songs here.

I stumbled upon a Maharajan song endorsing Samar Farg Fouad, the daughter of the famous writer and thinker Farg Fouad is running independently in Nasr City in Cairo.

I have not heard a single complaint from the Musicians syndicate and its music zealot head Hany Shaker who managed to cancel the concerts of Maharajan singers in other Arab countries.

In fact, if this proves anything, it proves that Maharajan music has already established itself as a genre in the Egyptian society with lots of fans that candidates including big shots use it to appeal to voters.

The question now: will those songs make the voters elect those candidates at all !? Or they will just shake it and that’s it !? Time will tell.


  1. The song sounds like one the westerners would belly dance to: from 2016

  2. Gezira Hotel in Luxor - 2016


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