Today, May 24, Egyptians once again headed to the polls on the second day of historic presidential elections in which candidates are pitting stability against the ideals of the Arab Spring uprising.
Despite the heat, people are waiting in queues outside polling stations.
“I’m very happy because we’ll be choosing our president. I came to vote last night but it was too crowded, so I’m back,” said one of women in the queue.
BNN already reported that on Wednesday, May 23 a historic presidential election began in Egypt, possible only thanks to the popular uprising that overturned longtime leader Hosni Mubarak over a year ago.
13 candidates are competing in the poll, which is considered the nation’s first fair presidential vote in Egypt’s modern history.
Two of the candidates are expected to go into June run-offs after the May 23 and 24 vote, with pollsters saying the number of undecided voters makes the result of the first round extremely difficult to predict.
The next president will inherit a struggling economy, deteriorating security and the challenge of uniting a nation divided by the uprising and its sometimes deadly aftermath, but his powers are yet to be defined by a new constitution, The Telegraph reported.
The country’s military rulers have already promised to hand over executive power to a civilian government by the end of next month. However, distrust in the military’s power still inspires protests, some of which result in deadly clashes.
Protesters are upset at the slow pace of reform since Mubarak’s ouster. Some also raise concern that the country’s military leadership is delaying the transition to civilian rule, reports CNN.
Among the contenders is former foreign minister and Arab League chief Amr Moussa, Mubarak’s last prime minister Ahmed Shafiq, the powerful Muslim Brotherhood’s candidate Mohammed Mursi, and others. Some of them are accused of being related to the old regime.
Ballot boxes from Wednesday were kept overnight in the stations after being sealed with wax by election commission officials and left under military and police protection.
Results are expected on Sunday, May 27.