Washington, DC – Staff and delegates from IRI will observe, or witness, the second phase of Egypt’s people’s assembly elections scheduled for December 14 and 15, 2011. This mission follows on IRI’s successful observation mission for the first phase of Egypt’s elections. IRI will also observe the third phase of the elections scheduled for January 3 and 4, 2012.
Delegates for the second phase include: Thomas Garrett, IRI’s Vice President for Programs; Jake Hale, founder of CS Advisors, LLC; Sam LaHood, IRI’s Resident Country Director in Egypt; and David Schenker, Aufzien Fellow and Director of the Program on Arab Politics at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. IRI staff will also serve as delegates and assist in the mission. As with the first phase, IRI will utilize its long-term witnesses to gain a complete perspective of Egypt’s electoral processes.
In the first phase of the elections, IRI’s mission noted that while the elections were administered in an effort of good faith there were logistical challenges and several procedural anomalies that needed to be improved upon by Egypt’s Higher Elections Commission (HEC) in remaining phases. IRI delegates in this second phase will be paying particular attention to these areas of concern:
- Additional planning for ballot distribution to ensure prompt starting times at polling stations;
- Clearer guidance from the HEC on the 48-hour ban on campaigning followed by enforcement of the campaign silence rule;
- Improvements to logistical planning for vote counting at district counting stations, particularly better preparation for the large number of ballot boxes arriving to district centers at the close of the second day of voting; and
- Clearer guidance on the close of polling stations and additional efforts to ensure ballot security between the first and second days of voting.
Prior to deploying to the governorates voting in the second phase, delegates will be briefed on the political environment in Egypt, Egyptian election law, and the rights and responsibilities of international observers. During the two days of voting, delegates will observe polling stations and identify and evaluate strengths and weaknesses in Egypt’s election system, including campaign regulations, the balloting process, vote tabulation and reporting.
Since 1983, IRI has monitored more than 135 elections in more than 45 countries.Top