- Not democratically
- Not elected
- Not President
In a perfect world the case would be where the voters are educated and well informed, where the candidates all have an equal chance and where the voting is honestly run, supervised and counted with transparency. But we do not live in a perfect world, far from it.
For our Egyptian Presidential elections we were far, far from perfect. In fact the setup was so warped, so rigged and so full of fraud, it is a macabre joke that it went through and elections were completed.
The atmosphere prevailing at the time was one of extremes. The polarization which was the outcome from the results of the first round, cemented into two camps. The worst case scenario was upon us, either you chose the Muslim Brotherhood in the person of Morsi, or you chose what had been described as the reviled Mubarak era, in the person of General Shafik. It was supposed to be a no- brainier and Morsi should have been a shu-in. But it was not. Too many people had reservations about the Brotherhood, mainly the older, better educated generation that knew about the Brotherhood’s violent past history.
With the golden prize within reach, the Brotherhood went all the way out to ensure they win the Presidency. They were so desperate they really went overboard with the steps they took to ensure their victory. Not only did they utilize all legitimate means, they were so desperate, they crossed the line and went into the illegitimate.
The ground was already laid for them.
Religion was openly and brazenly used in influencing the voters with religious affiliations or tendencies, these being the less educated and poorer strata of society, which constitute more that 40% of the total population. The men were brainwashed every Friday in the mosques, the women through donations of free foodstuffs and services, and the whole family through numerous television channels, blaring day and night about their religious duty to vote for Morsi as the man who “knows God and will follow God’s word in his treatment of the people”. Although the Constitution specifically stated that no party or candidate from a “religious” background is allowed to run, this was totally ignored, and even if there were voices pointing out this infraction, this was completely ignored.
The ground was also prepared in the way the constituencies were set up. Egypt was divided in such a way as to ensure that where the Brotherhood was strongest, were given much more weight. This was the game played in the previous Parliamentary elections. True the Judiciary finally, in its own time, dissolved Parliament because of the unconstitutionality of the law regulating parliamentary elections.
To tip the scale against Shafik in the coming run, rumors were spread that he would bring Mubarak’s regime back and that would become a great embarrassment to Egypt after such a wonderful revolution. This was the icing on the cake. And all the above could be considered as a fair fight, even if slightly unethical. But when ambition comes through the door, ethics go out of the window. But still, all was done ‘legally’, or when not quite constitutional, this was ignored and swept under the carpet. The amount of money spent on Morsi’s campaign way exceeded the allowed maximum, but when complaints were lodged with the Elections Committee, whose decisions were final and irrevocable, all was swept aside as ‘unproven’!
The more serious infractions were revealed during those few weeks between the first and second rounds of Presidential elections, as well as throughout the elections process. The first and one of the most serious was the fraudulent electoral data base. This means that the lists of voters were not correct. Dr. Ibrahim Mustafa Kamel, a businessman and ex Member of Parliament made a study of that, and with irrefutable proof, showed how those lists were doctored with more than 9 million bogus names added, be they of those deceased, or the same name with different national identity card numbers. One example he gave was of one person having 600 different ID cards under the same name spread over three constituencies. Voting was spread over two days to enable these people cover the different areas and use all their ID’s. This infraction alone should have nullified these elections, but the second infraction was the setup of the Elections Committee. A MB sleeper was placed on that Committee and was assigned the job of looking into reported infractions and deciding whether they were serious enough to warrant investigation or not. So when the issue of the fraudulent electoral data base was brought to his attention, he said that parliamentary elections were run according to that data base, and the first round of Presidential elections was run according to that data base, therefore it is good enough for the coming runoff between Morsi and Shafik. This did not even make sense, and many a case was lodged with the courts to stop these elections, but the wheels of the law are notoriously slow.
The second very serious infraction was the discovery of ballots already marked for Morsi being shipped out of the printing press to the different constituencies. A pre-marked ballot for Morsi should have stopped the electoral process in its track. But no, the MB sleeper on the Electoral Committee again intervened and said that all such pre-printed ballots were caught and that none were used. No proof, no confirmation by any other source, and the electoral process continued. Again a spate of ineffectual court cases.
As per the Constitution elections are to be very closely supervised by the Judiciary. It specifies that each ballot box must be supervised by a Judge. We do have enough Judges for that, but what was not known at that time was the number of MB sleepers among them. A Judge supervising a ballot box is the only one in charge of ensuring the honesty and correctness of the process. Through him fraud can be perpetuated without any challenge. Even then there were quite a few complaints that were systematically swept under the carpet by the same member of the Electoral Committee.
Although the count was televised, the trick was what happened to the boxes between the time they were supposedly sealed and kept overnight, till the unsealing and counting the next morning. Some televised clips of how some ballot boxes were switched, how some were thrown out in the fields and the ballots torn and burnt. But still all swept under the carpet and deemed too few and just individual cases to really count or make a difference. This again should have been an infraction that should have stopped the elections.
One of the very serious infractions was the forceful stopping of whole villages of Christians from going to the ballots. Armed, bearded men lined those villages and threatened to shoot any man or woman who comes out of the house, let alone try to reach a voting booth. Christians were deemed to be automatically against the Muslim Brotherhood and would vote for Shafik. This fact alone should have stopped elections, but the way it was dealt with was adding insult to injury. The reason given for not looking into that infraction was that according to the records at the disposal of the Elections Committee there are no Christians in those villages! This was really beyond acceptable. But this Committee’s decision are final and incontestable!
A final and minor infraction, but one nevertheless, was the providing of pens by the Judges supervising the ballots to those voting. These pens were later found out to have evaporating ink which would enable the ballot to be marked whichever way after the voter leaves. Quite a few of those were discovered especially in Upper Egypt where the majority of the uneducated and those below the poverty line.
The final straw that broke the camel’s back was the very loud, blatant threats of violence, of burning Egypt if Morsi does not win. The announcement of the winner was delayed several times and the threats of violence reached a crescendo, till finally the Chairman of the Committee announced the winning of Morsi.
So with all the above, how can Morsi be considered as democratic or elected or a President. To a majority of the people he is not and never was a democratically elected President, but the Head of a terrorist, violent organization that stole Egypt from its true children who felt cheated and alienated.
The frustration felt by Egyptians like me when I see western media talking about reinstating the ‘legitimately democratically elected President’ is unbearable. How could people be so blind to what has been going on and so obvious to all of us here in Egypt. It will forever remain a mystery to me why the western media has deliberately falsified reports and misled its public. Egyptians are aware of the facts and that is why they came out in the millions when there was a chance to get rid of this terrorist interloper on June 30, 2013. But before that we had to endure a full year of rule by a fascist terrorist organization.
To be continued … One Year of Morsi’s Rule.