Abu Ismail holds rally ahead of official campaign period

Islamist presidential hopeful Hazem Salah Abu Ismail held a rally Saturday to start his presidential campaign, before the official campaign period is set to start.

Worshippers at the Assad al-Forat Mosque in Dokki welcomed Abu Ismail and chanted, saying, “The people want Hazem Abu Ismail.” The potential candidate talked about other presidential hopefuls and criticized some of their actions.

Ismail also explained how supporters can make proxies to endorse his candidacy.

Holding a rally before the official date for starting campaigns violates the elections law, which prohibits campaigning from 7 March until 30 April, after which campaigns can continue until 20 May.

The first post-revolution presidential election will take place on 23 to 24 May, with results to be announced by late June.

Several presidential hopefuls rejected the Presidential Elections Commission’s decision to ban campaigning, one saying that “it seems the committee wants to hold presidential elections in secret without enabling hopefuls to communicate with voters.”

They accused the commission of being mysterious in its procedures.

The commission earlier warned hopefuls that they would be committed to removing any form of campaign publicity at their own expense.

Translated from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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