Egyptian Election: Security, Economy and Identity
The most defining issues for the Egyptian voters have been their future security, a healthy national economy and an adherence to the principles of Islam. This became clear in the presentations given at the seminar “Elections in Egypt The Rise of the Islamist Parties and Scenarios for the Future” arranged by Danish Egyptian Dialogue Institute (DEDI), The Danish Institute for International Studies (DIIS) and DIPD.
The DIIS auditorium was packed to the breaking point Monday afternoon with more than 100 persons from the Danish NGO’s, political parties, the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Middle Eastern Embassies, universities and the media sector.
The presentations were based on unique empirical material from six national voters surveys conducted in Egypt leading up to and during the elections. The surveys were made as part of the project ‘Towards a Participatory and Dynamic Political Party Environment in Egypt’ implemented by DEDI and DIPD in collaboration with – among others– Al-Ahram Centre for Strategic and Political Studies (Egypt’s leading think-tank on social and political issues).
Former Director of Al Ahram Centre for Strategic and Political Parties, Gamal Abdul Gawad, concluded that the rise of the Islamist parties in the Egyptian election can be explained by the fact that the election has been dominated by a focus on identity issues such as; who were the ones most suppressed by the former regime, and who would be the ones to uphold the Islamic values of Egypt. The parties did not focus on socio economic issues, the health sector, the educational sector or other policy issues in their campaigns.
In their political campaigning the Islamist parties have succeed in positioning themselves as a real alternative to the old regime, as the deliverer of change in the country. A change with great focus on Islamic values and social justice. A change very welcomed by the Egyptian voters according to the surveys and presentations at the seminar.
- Download the presentation “Do the Poor Vote Islamist” by consultant, Jacob Wichmann.
- Download the presentation “Egyptian Scenarios” by DEDI Director, Jacob Erle.
- Read feature about the Egyptian election (In Danish) by Jakob Wichmann and Karina Pultz, from DIPD, in Jyllandsposten.