Statement (1)

January 14th, 2014 by Editor

Outcomes of Monitoring the Referendum Process by the Egyptian Coalition for Monitoring Elections (ECME)

The First Day

Large turnout in the early hours, involving a number of observations including:

  • Influencing the will of the voters by Muslim Brotherhood
  • Election propaganda in order to vote “Yes” by supporters and “No” by opponents of the new constitution
  • Violence and bullying in different areas in the early hours of the referendum to influence the will of the voters

Today, Tuesday Jan. 14, 2014, the referendum on the new draft constitution began at 09:00 am and will last for two days, Jan. 14 and 15, in all of the 27 Egyptian governorates from 09:00 am to 09:00 pm.

The referendum process is conducted under judicial supervision of nearly 13,867 judges from various judicial bodies and under the security of armed and police forces.

All security forces of the army and polices have spread throughout the republic to secure 52,742,139 voters who are eligible to vote on the draft constitution.

The early hours of the first day of referendum have witnesses high turnout of voters as well as a number of positives in many governorates, most important of which are tightening security in all polling stations as well as taking a decision to exclude a prosecutor at Gamal Abdel Nasser School, Old Cairo for influencing voters.

Today also witnessed a number of violations and abuses, most serious of which are: a) the explosion that shook the city of Imbaba in Giza Governorate at North Giza Court, b) finding some improvised explosive devices in various areas, c) a number of polling stations have delayed opening doors until 11:00 am, d) propaganda to vote yes, e) influencing the will of the voters and urging them not to participate in the referendum by the Brotherhood, and f) mass transport of voters.

The referendum process has witnesses a number of violations and abuses monitored by ECME until 11:00 am, which can be explained as follows:

First: The late opening of polling stations

In Al-Gharbiyah Governorate, ECME’s observers have monitored the late opening of the doors of polling stations at Abdul Hai Khalil School, Al-Mahala Al-koubra District, as well as  polling stations at Uqba Ibn Naf’ School where the polling stations did not open until 9:30 am.

In Giza Governorate, ECME’s observers have monitored the late opening of the doors of polling stations 52, 53 and 54 at Ameer Al-Sho’araa School, Al-Ayat District where the polling stations did not open until 9:30 am.

In Luxor Governorate, ECME’s observers have monitored the late opening of the doors of polling stations at Al-Shaheed Mohammad Nour School where the polling stations did not open until 9:15 am.

In Aswan Governorate, ECME’s observers have monitored the late opening of the doors of polling stations 127, 128 and 129 at Al-Domariyah School, Edfo City where the polling stations did not open until 11:00 am because of absence of the judges and/or employees.

In Al-Sharqia Governorate, ECME’s observers have monitored the late opening of polling stations nos. (164, 165, 166) at Al-Shaheed Ghaith Primary School, Fakous District untill 9.20 am, despite the fact that there was a big crowd of voters before the stations and too slow entrance of voters.

In Qena Governorate, ECME’s observers have monitored the late opening of polling stations at Elementary Bakhaytah School until 9.30 am.

Second: Violations inside Polling Stations

In Daqahlia Governorate, ECME’s observers have monitored some violations inside and outside polling stations in Belkas Preparatory School for Boys, including absence or lack of showing lists and records of voters.

Third: Influencing Voters and Election Propaganda

In Alexandria Governorate, ECME’s observers have monitored cars passing while playing patriotic songs and carrying “Yes for Constitution” banners throughout Moharam Bek calling for voters to vote “Yes”.

In Daqahlia Governorate, ECME’s observers have monitored propaganda before the Azhar Institute at Mansura calling for voters to vote “Yes”.

In Minya Governorate, Security forces have arrested 13 persons advocating Brotherhood Group at Deir Mawas trying to influence the voters using propaganda papers and holding 250 publications tilted “Ma Bonya Ala Batel Fa howa Batel” (Every derivative of mendacity is equally mendacious). They called for citizens not to recognize the coup and the subsequent government, president and constitution. They also called for citizens to commit to achieving the goals of January Revolution. A report was filed under number 11 at Deir Mawas Police Station. Similarly, ECME’s observers have monitored dissemination of publications calling for citizens not to go to referendum, that they have described as being null and void and that those who call for going to referendum exercising lousy and villainous business.

Fourth: Group Transportation for Voters

In Al-Sharqia Governorate, ECME’s observers have monitored some cases of group transportation for voters before Al-Nahal Preparatory School as well as Sadat Secondary School at Zagazig City by vehicles carrying license numbers (4186 and 4237) for voters to vote “Yes”.

Fifth: Violence and bullying

In Giza Governorate, ECME’s observers monitored about two hours before starting of the referendum a big explosion around North Giza Court, located at Sudan St. in Imbaba District, without any deaths. The explosion destroyed the facade of some commercial shops as well as the glass facade and some columns of the Court.

In Minya Governorate, ECME’s observers have monitored that the security forces securing the polling stations have found IEDs close to Ali Ibn Abi Taleb at Minya City. They combed the surrounding areas and defused the improvised explosive devices.

In Fayum Governorate, ECME’s observers have monitored the break out of demonstrations by the Brotherhood Group trying to prevent citizens from going to the referendum. As a result, the security forces had to deal with them.

It is noteworthy that the ECME combines about 128 human rights and development organizations and associations throughout 27 governorates. The operating room, held at the headquarters of the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights (EOHR), composes of the EOHR, Egyptian Center for Women’s Rights (ECWR), and Andalus Institute for Tolerance & Anti-Violence Studies.

 

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