Campaigns end for Egypt election eclipsed by Gaza war


Election campaigns have concluded in Egypt ahead of a three-day polling period set to start on Sunday.

Incumbent Abdul Fattah al-Sisi is seeking a third term as an independent candidate, despite a 2018 pledge that he would not vie again. He came to power a decade ago through a coup.

Two of the presidential contestants, Hazem Omar and Farid Zahran, are perceived as al-Sisi’s allies, leading some to brand the election a sham.

The fourth candidate, Abdel Sanad Yamama, heads Al Wafd, Egypt’s oldest political party, and has promised to save the struggling economy.

The election in Africa’s third most populous country has been overshadowed by the war in neighbouring Gaza.

Economic concerns are also rife, amid a cost-of-living crisis.

Egyptians living abroad already cast their votes between 1 and 3 December.

President Sisi is predicted to win by a landslide, similar to the previous two elections.

Rights groups have accused him of stifling democracy.

Ahmad Tantawi, whom some saw as a formidable challenger to al-Sisi, claimed in October that security forces had forced him to withdraw his candidacy and harassed his supporters.


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