CAIRO: Muslim Brotherhood (MB) MPs announced their withdrawal from the local council elections in a press conference on Monday.
Abdel Moneim Abdel Maqsoud, MB lawyer, told Daily News Egypt that the group’s decision- announced just a day before election day – comes after “a major crackdown on candidates affiliated with the group.
We call on the Egyptian people to boycott the municipal elections because of the executive s disregard for justice, the group s deputy supreme leader Mohamed Habib told AFP.The group was only able to field 20 candidates in the local elections, Abdel Maqsoud said, after most potential candidates were arrested or barred from registering.
Nevertheless, the group does not expect to win any seats. “We wouldn’t be surprised if the candidates’ names were not on the list on Tuesday, the government could easily decide to delete their names, he added.
Around 825 MB members were arrested during the registration period for the elections last month.
According to a Brotherhood press statement sent to Daily News Egypt, a police officer attacked the home of one of the candidates on April 5 and assaulted his daughter.
The statement also added that security forces abducted five MB members while walking in the streets of Kafr El-Sheikh on the same day.
On April 4, security forces detained around 34 members from several cities, including Beni Suef, Al-Daqhaliya, Ismailia, Assiut, and Damietta.
That same afternoon, national security forces allegedly abducted Hisham Esseily, one of the candidates running in the elections, the press statement read.
The group’s leader Mohamed Mahdi Akef as well as its deputy leaders Mahmoud Ezzat and Habib were not present at the press conference that only hosted MB parliament members, headed by Saad Al-Katatny, PA member and head of the Brotherhood’s parliamentary bloc. -Additional reporting by AFP.