Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Egypt: NDP secures more that 80 per cent of the seats in second round

President Hosni Mubarak's ruling National Democratic Party (NDP) has won 83 per cent of the seats in the second round of parliamentary elections. The two biggest opposition groups – the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) and the liberal Wafd party – withdrew from the second round, alleging fraud and rigging in the first ballot.

International monitors and Egyptian human rights groups have called for the results to be annulled. The US and the EU have voiced criticism over the poll due to widespread violence and allegations of rigging, but Egyptian officials insist the poll was fair and free of government interference.

Figures released by the election commission show that NDP secure 420 of parliament's 508 seats, more than 80 per cent compared with 70 per cent in the last parliament. MB and the Wafd party boycotted Sunday's election following NDP's win of 209 out of 211 seats in the first round of voting. The results saw MB, the leading opposition group in Egypt, with 20 per cent of the seats, without any MPs in the new assembly.

The group has called on President Mubarak to void the new parliament and run a re-election, overseen by an independent adjudicator. The call was seconded by an Egyptian rights group, Independent Coalition for Elections' Observation.

Both rounds of the parliamentary elections took place amid clashes between voters and security forces, as well as reports of rigging and fraud. Hundreds of MB members were rounded up prior to the first round as part of a clampdown on the group by the government.

Amnesty International estimates that as many as eight people had died in election related clashes, with at least 17 arrested in the city of Mersa Matruh for protesting against the results in their governance.

Source: BBC News

For more news and expert analysis about Egypt, please see Egypt Politics & Security.

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