Campaigning ban impossible to apply, say experts

Experts have agreed that it is practically impossible to apply the decision of the Presidential Elections Commission prohibiting campaigning before 30 April.

They said this would be difficult to control as there are too many electoral constituencies, campaigning abroad cannot be monitored and there are no legal penalties for violators.

They also agreed that this presidential election is exceptional because, thanks to the revolution, it is first time that Egyptians have the opportunity to choose their president without any restrictions or security interventions, and because they are looking forward to choosing a president who attains the objectives of the revolution.

“The timetable set by the commission came late and compressed most stages of the electoral process,” said Abdel Ghaffar Suleiman, a professor of electoral systems at Cairo University. “I urge the commission to control the campaigning so as not to repeat the violations that were committed in the last parliamentary elections.”

“The committee was formed too late, months after candidates already began their propaganda campaigns,” he added. “Also, how would campaigning be controlled when there are so many different advertising materials.”

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