Voting and preaching: State officials call on youth to vote

Documenting celebrities as they cast their ballots seems to be the highlight of this round of elections coverage, with local media reporting on several high-profile figures voting in the second stage of parliamentary polls in Egypt on Sunday

The second round is taking place in 13 governorates, among which is Cairo, a constituency with a concentrated number of officials and celebrities eligible to vote.

Many of those voting posed and smiled for journalists, making sure to send a message to the Egyptian people as they cast their ballots. 

Al-Azhar Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayyeb called on people, especially the youth, to take part in elections to uphold the achievements of the Constitution. Speaking to the privately owned CBC channel, Tayyeb said that Egyptians are betting on the youth. He pleaded with Egyptians who are refraining from taking part in the elections, saying that people have a duty to fulfill toward Egypt through voting. Failing to do so is like failing one’s own parents, he added.

Tayyeb’s comments come amid concerns of the low turnout extending to the second round of elections, with the first stage closing at 26 percent participation, according to the High Elections Committee — a figure that has since been disputed. 

Minister of International Cooperation Sahar Nasr also voted on Sunday and called on citizens to take part in the elections. Nasr, according to Al-Ahram, also called on the youth to take part in the vote, and said that people should identify candidates who best represent them. 

The privately owned Youm7 reported that former interim President Adly Mansour voted on Sunday as well, and called on people to take part in the process which will “seal the political roadmap.” Mansour added that it’s too early to talk about who will lead the parliament, which to him is a question that should wait on the final parliamentary formation.

Youm7 also reported on Mubarak-era parliamentary speaker Ahmed Fathy Sorour’s vote. During his interview, Sorour called voting a “national duty,” which will lead to the creation of a highly important parliament.

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