By Mahmoud El-Sayed
Current conflicts within the Sufi community in Egypt have intensified, due to the electoral competition.
Sufis in Egypt are split over two competing lists. The first is the Republican Alliance list, headed by Jugde Tahani Al-Gebali, the previous vice president of the Supreme Constitutional Court of Egypt. Al-Gebali’s list has a Sufi icon on it, Essam Mohy Eddin, Secretary-General of the Azmia order.
The other competing list is ‘For the Love of Egypt’, on which the head of the Supreme Council of Sufi Orders, Abdel Hadi Al-Qasabi, is running.
Essam Mohy Eddin said a number of Sufi orders will file a complaint to the Supreme Electoral Commission against Al-Qasabi, who is running for the parliamentary seat in Cairo on the ‘For the Love of Egypt’ list.
Mohy Eddin said the complaint would include Al-Qasabi exploiting a religious institution, which he heads, for the use of politics, and using its name in his list’s electoral campaign.
Al-Qasabi uses the council’s statements, which are sent to journalists, to support the ‘For the Love of Egypt’ list, which is in breach of electoral laws, said Mohy Eddin.
He called on Al-Qasabi to submit his resignation from the Supreme Council of Sufi Orders, and to continue in the electoral process, or withdraw, if he wishes to maintain his current position. He added that more than 30 orders of Sufism support the Republican Alliance list throughout Greater Cairo.
Mohy Eddin added that the list is led by Tahani Al-Gebali, noting that their campaign is currently being intensified due to the fierce competition against the ‘For the Love of Egypt’, the Al-Nour Party, the unified, and the Republican Alliance lists.
On the other hand, Al-Qasabi said he has been facing a harsh campaign against him, organised by a number of Sufis. He denied the charges levelled against him by the Azmia order, saying he did not exploit the council in his electoral campaign