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Number of female participants in elections unclear - Daily News Egypt

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Number of female participants in elections unclear

Women’s participation decreased in past four years, says Shaban


Since the 25 January Revolution in 2011, most Egyptian woman did not miss the chance to vote in most elections, according to media outlets, which Described women as the racehorses in either parliamentary or presidential elections.

There is a clear presence of women participating in the current parliamentary elections.

Director of the Nile Center for Media in Benha, Ramadan Arafa, said there was a 35% turnout of voters on the first day of the parliamentary elections with strong participation among women and youths.

The first day of the voting process in the governorates passed peacefully under full judicial supervision, protection, and regulation under the armed forces and the police, Arafa said. The participation of women in the elections exceeded the participation of men, according to indicators, and youth participation was great in Benha, unlike other districts in the first phase.

In North Sinai, the polling stations witnessed a large turnout of women to cast their ballots in the parliamentary elections. The National Council for Women’s (NCW) branch in North Sinai said the women there voted in massive numbers Monday, which is great evidence of the high political awareness of Sinai women.

The NCW operations office told Daily News Egypt that female participation was quite high in the parliamentary elections, but no numbers were available on Monday since the second phase has not ended yet.

The Press officer of the operations room of the General Federation of Women Essam Shaaban told Daily News Egypt that women’s participation in the current parliamentary elections was not very high, but rather declining since the 25 January Revolution. During and after the revolution, women’s participation was great but now is poor in comparison.

“Women feel depressed and they are very busy with everyday problems,” Shaaban said. “High prices, low income, and everyday routine are all factors that hinder women from participating”.

Low-income and working women witnessed low turnout, unlike previous elections, in which this segment of women had highly participated in elections.

“Media just wanted to stress on the fact that women have the lion’s share of political participation compared men, which is not as true as it was four years ago, when women were enthusiastic to cast their votes,” Shaaban said.

The new legislature will be comprised of 596 seats: 448 elected as individuals and 120 through winner-takes-all lists. The remaining 5% of the parliament will be appointed by the president. The chamber is planning to hold its inaugural session in December 2015.

The first phase of the elections was held in 14 provinces on 18 and 19 October with a voter turnout of 26.5%.

A total of 55.6 million Egyptians eligible to cast their votes in the parliamentary polls, 27.4 million were eligible to vote during the first stage and 28.2 million in the second.

Topics: elections

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