Second phase of Egyptian polls see better turnout.

Summary: About 400,000 Egyptians are staying in the UAE.

The second phase of the Egyptian parliamentary elections held on Saturday and Sunday (November 21-22) saw a better turnout here in the UAE, as compared to the first stage on October 17-18.

As many as 139 polling centres in 123 embassies and 16 consulates worldwide took part in the elections, which saw up to 11 million Egyptians casting their ballots for a new government.

While Egyptians hailing from 14 provinces cast their votes in the first phase of the elections, voters from the remaining 13 governorates took part in the two-day second stage of the elections.

According to the higher judiciary elections committee, most of the 2,984 voters who cast their ballots in the first phase of the parliamentary elections in the UAE favoured the candidates of the 'In love for Egypt' list.

Up to 2,847 candidates registered in the second round of the elections are individually competing on 222 seats. Those are against 60 seats available for four lists (blocks) of hopeful parliamentary members.

Sherif El Bedewy, Consul General of Egypt in Dubai and northern emirates, on Sunday told Khaleej Times that the door of the polling centre was open from 9am to 9pm. Abdulrahman Raafat, member of the election committee here, told Khaleej Times that some 400,000 Egyptians are staying in the UAE.

Israa Abdul Khaliq, an Egyptian teacher, said she came from Ras Al Khaimah to participate in the elections. She said she voted for a list she did not want to disclose. "I guess they are up to the responsibility in this critical time."

Mohammed Saad, an Egyptian accountant, said this is his first time to take part in the parliamentary elections. "Hopefully, this voting will be a step forward in the right direction."

ahmedshaaban@khaleejtimes.com

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