Egypt elections commission heard 141 complaints in first hours of open polls
Egyptian women queue at a polling station in the Sandyoun village in Qaliubia, some 40 kms north of the capital Cairo, on November 22, 2015. (AFP/File)
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By Sunday afternoon, the Supreme Elections Commission had announced that it had received 141 complaints in the first hours of the second and final phase of Egypt's parliamentary elections.
Commission spokesman Amr Marwan told a press conference complaints either reported delays in the opening of polling stations or outdated information on the locations of polling stations, provided by the state's directory of information.
Inside Egypt, voters from 13 provinces are now casting their ballots in Cairo, Qalyubia, Daqahliyah, Menoufia, Gharbia, Kafr el-Sheikh, Sharqiya, Damietta, Port Said, Ismailia, Suez, North Sinai and South Sinai will head to the polls in the ongoing phase.
President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi cast his vote in a scene aired on state run television earlier today.
Today also marks the last day of voting abroad in this phase of the poll. Marwan said the number of Egyptians who voted abroad in this phase had exceeded 28,000 by 2 pm, climbing from around 10,000 on the first day.
In the first phase of the elections, 30,531 people voted abroad, representing a mere 4.5 percent of over 680,000 potential voters. The number of Egyptians living abroad is estimated at 8 million, around 682,000 according to the most recent data provided by the government.
Marwan did not provide information on the turnout rate in this phase but the turnout was low in phase one and Aswat Masriya reporters stationed at various provinces say the turnout is "weak" in the second phase as well.
Voting in the first phase to choose members of the House of Representatives was held last month with a turnout rate of 26.56 percent of a total of 27.4 million voters in the first round.
Individual candidates or coalition lists must secure 50 plus one votes to win seats. In phase one only four individual candidates won seats in the first round, leading to run-offs in the majority of constituencies.
Run-offs held in 99 constituencies saw a turnout rate of 21.71 percent, after 5.5 million of a total 25.58 million eligible voters cast their ballots.
The upcoming legislature will be made up of 568 elected representatives, 448 running for individual seats in single-member constituencies and 120 running via the electoral lists system. The president may appoint up to 28 members, which adds up to a total of 596 seats.
According to the State Information Service, 222 individual seats are up for grabs in the second phase.
The total number of eligible voters in the second phase is 28.2 million, with the capital, Cairo, accounting for the lion's share with 6.8 million potential voters.
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