The former New Valley governor has said his resignation was part of his “national duty” to avoid embarrassing the government after publically endorsing presidential candidate Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi.
In an interview with local newspaper Shorouk, Major General Mahmoud Khalifa said he does not regret his decision to endorse former defence minister Al-Sisi. He added that he did not see it to be against the law but offered his resignation to support the notion of neutrality towards the upcoming elections in the executive branch of government.
Prime Minister Ibrahim Mehleb accepted Khalifa’s resignation last Thursday and the cabinet released a statement saying that a directive had been sent to “all ministers, governors and representatives of the executive branch of government to abide by strict neutrality among all presidential candidates”.
The campaign office for Hamdeen Sabahy, who is running against Al-Sisi in the May elections, welcomed Mehleb’s decision to accept Khalifa’s resignation. In a Thursday statement the campaign stressed that the government should be a “neutral party” in the electoral process and allow “Egyptians to choose their leader without interference or pressure from anyone”.