Egypt’s Electoral Flaws Show Need for Reform | Freedom House

Egypt’s Electoral Flaws Show Need for Reform

Washington

The flaws in Egypt’s parliamentary elections last Sunday call into question the credibility of the electoral process and show the critical need for reform, according to Freedom House.
 
“The Egyptian government will need to make substantial improvements in the electoral process to ensure a fair vote for president next year,” said David J. Kramer, Executive Director of Freedom House. “The process must be open to the full participation of Egyptian citizens if it is to confer legitimacy on the president.”
 
In the months preceding the parliamentary elections, authorities cracked down heavily on political opposition and independent media.  Election Day was marred by vote rigging and a high level of violence, which included attacks on voters at polling stations and on candidates.  Access to polling stations by domestic observers was greatly restricted, and the Egyptian government refused to allow international election observers.
 
“To restore the credibility of the elections, Egypt’s government must allow all candidates and their supporters to campaign freely, let media cover and comment on the elections without interference, and give both domestic and international groups full access to observe the election process,” said Daniel Calingaert, Deputy Director of Programs at Freedom House. “Additionally, the High Elections Commission must be given the resources to operate independently, including to respond adequately to election-related complaints.”
 
Egypt is ranked Not Free in Freedom in the World 2010, Freedom House's survey of political rights and civil liberties, and Partly Free in Freedom of the Press 2010.
 
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Freedom House is an independent watchdog organization that supports democratic change, monitors the status of freedom around the world, and advocates for democracy and human rights.

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