Reports on Egyptian Referendum

Last week, the Egyptian Association for Supporting Democratic Development (EASD), which monitored the Egyptian referendum on the constitutional amendments, issued a report which stated that despite some irregularities, the referendum was fair.  The EASD called on all Egyptians to accept the results of the historic referendum which had a high voter turnout.  Their conclusions did show, however, that there was a lack of adequate organization and that rules surrounding election monitors were inconsistent with international standards with some observers being ill-treated.  The report made note of high youth involvement and women’s participation as well as the sectarian tensions present both prior to and during the referendum. It also called for the establishment of an independent committee for electoral procedures.

The Egyptian Association for Community Participation Enhancement (EACPE) also observed the referendum and issued a series of short reports on the referendum and their recommendations for future elections. The group also found that the referendum suffered from organizational issues, attempts to prevent observation, judges refusing to stamp voting cards, and abuses by the Muslim Brotherhood and other groups harassing voters to vote “Yes.”  Theycalled for the formation of an independent electoral committee as well as building up polling stations’ capacities, holding elections on numerous days, and the postponement of parliamentary elections.