Egypt Presidential Election, 2014: Where Have the Candidates Gone?
From Thirteen to One
As mentioned in the previous post, in the 2012 election we had 13 qualified candidates, six of whom are popular political faces. This year only one of them is among the presidential hopefuls. What happened to the rest? Why did they choose not to take part this time?
The only 2012 candidate who decided to run for presidency in 2014, Sabahy was given around 5 million votes in 2012 making him the third highest candidate in terms of number of votes after the ousted president Mohamed Morsi, and the Mubarak-era prime minister, Ahmed Shafiq.
Sabahy decided to take a chance in 2014 even though the results are already known. He has stated in a press conference last month that his personal decision is to take part in "the election war", believing that he is doing that for the revolution and the martyrs.
Reactions to this presidential bid varied; some believed that by taking this decision he's legitimizing the election, others called him a traitor for running against Field Marshal Abd El Fattah Al Sisi, and of course his supporters celebrated the decision and that they now have "a revolutionary candidate." Tamarod, (Rebel), the political movement that helped bring Former President Mohamed Morsi down, has frozen the membership of two of its members after they announced their Support to Sabahy. This came after Tamarod announced their support to Sisi.
Hamdeen Sabahy is a socialist whose main idol is President Gamal Abd El Nasser. He is also the leader of El Karama Party (dignity), a socialist party that teamed up with the Muslim Brotherhood in the 2011 Parliamentary Elections. He is also the godfather of El Tayar El Shaaby, a political opposition group that has emerged during the MB rule. Sabahy has turned against the MB after they took over the parliament and it became clear that they will not be working with any other political group. During the Morsi rule, Sabahy was also on the side of the opposition, and was one of the leaders of the Egyptian Salvation Front that was one of the groups that called for the June 30 protests.
Abd El Monoem Abo El Fotooh
A previous MB leader who was sacked out of the MB in 2011 when he decided to run for presidency at a time when MB said they will not have a candidate. Abo El Fotooh fell fourth in 2012 election and is now head of Masr El Qaweya Party (Strong Egypt) a somewhat moderate Islamist party. Masr El Qaweya gave a neutral stance regarding June 30, then later declared the ouster of Morsi to be a coup d'etat.
Abo El Fotooh has declared in a press conference that he will not run for presidency in an election done under military rule, which we all know can never be free and fair.
Khaled Ali is a lawyer, human rights activist and a leftist. He was the youngest candidate and one with almost the fewest votes. Ali has announced in a press conference that he will not take part in "a play" in which the results are already known.
One of the main reasons Morsi won the 2012 election, was Ahmed Shafiq. An army Lieutenant General, Minister of Aviation in Ahmed Nazif's cabinet, the cabinet that was at office on January 25, 2011. He was also appointed prime minister by Mubarak on January 29. Shafiq took the second highest number of votes in 2012 and was in the second round against Morsi who won by a very small difference.
Shafiq's decision was not to take part in the 2014 election and asked his supporters to give their votes to Field Marshal Abd El Fattah El Sisi.
The Mubarak era Minister of Foreign Affairs, the previous Secretary-General of the Arab League and the candidate with the fifth highest number of votes in 2012 election. Moussa was also a leader of the Egyptian Salvation Front and was the chairman of the 2013 Constituent Assembly. Moussa's decision was to support Field Marshal Abd El Fattah El Sisi in the 2014 election and not to run himself. It has also been said that Moussa might have been promised a position as prime minister if we get to see Sisi as president, which is also probably a fact known to everyone, that Sisi is the next president that is.
He wasn't one of the candidates, yet in 2012 he was a very popular man, popular and hated. Lieutenant General Sami Annan was the army's Chief of Staff during the 2011 revolution and afterwards. He was known to be the man of U.S.A although no one has ever had proof for this, He was also said to be the one who put the MB in power, although this was also never proven. Annan has come out after a long silence after he was set aside by Morsi and put as his adviser, He came out days before June 30 2013 with a resignation and an announcement that he believes the MB are not working for the good of the country.
A few months after June 30, Annan announced that he is thinking of running for presidency. His announcement was met with anger from many who believe that he was the reason of many deaths as well as the MB rule. Later, just a few weeks ago, he announced that he will not run for presidency stating that the reason behind this is that he wants the country to stay united and that he is doing that for the good of Egypt.