Saturday, February 3, 2018

Egypt: Communist Party calls for a boycott of the presidential elections

In a recent statement, the Egyptian Communist Party's Politburo calls for a boycott of the presidential elections which will take place between 26 and 28 March 2018. 

# - State organs and institutions bear responsibility for turning election into a referendum harming Egypt's reputation. 

# - Governmental, parliamentary and media circles parading to consolidate policies and practices of totalitarian rule. 

# - Harnessing media to distort and block national opposition and prevent objective evaluation of the presidential term of office ended. 
# - The existence of candidates cannot turn the referendum into a real election.

Events and developments during the most recent days on the presidential elections proved the validity of all contents of the statement issued before by the Egyptian Communist Party Politburo of 18 January 2018. The statement stated that "The presidential elections come under conditions, circumstances and situations that lead together to the return to the totalitarian situations, which prevailed throughout the era before the January 2011 Revolution, which makes it closer to the referendum rather than the real democratic elections that the Egyptian people aspire to, especially after the great sacrifices made during the revolutions of January 25 and June 30. This puts the country in big trouble. It also pushes a large sector of the masses to negativity and non-participation of the masses as they have been doing throughout the past decades. This totalitarian atmosphere does not only lead to domination of one voice, hailing the only leader and marginalizing the people's role in confronting the big challenges facing citizens, but leads also to confiscation of political life already suffering besiege, narrowing the democratic margin and stifling national opposition voices, especially in light of the continued arsenal of laws restricting political, party, trade union and civil liberties. Moreover more notorious laws have been added in recent years, the laws of protest, trade unions and NGOs..
The statement stressed the impossibility of holding genuine democratic presidential elections under the insistence of the Authority and the state organs and institutions on a single candidate, i.e. President Sisi, under the Emergency Law, which imposes exceptional restrictions on political and mass movements of candidates and their supporters. It gives the candidate president and executive authorities absolute power, with the control of authorities and their security bodies over most of the media, especially satellite channels, "perpetually and continuously launching defamatory campaigning against any national voice and any rival candidate for President Sisi, as well as continuing campaigns to distort the January 2011 Revolution and destroy its icons. In light of harnessing state institutions singing day and night the achievements of the (candidate) President  without giving any opportunity for substantive discussion and evaluation of the previous presidential term, pros and cons.
The developments that followed have shown the validity of the statement that practices of the political authority, security apparatus and "incense casters" in the House of Representatives, ministries, local government and the media have all led to actually turning elections into a referendum, which harms Egypt's history, status and international reputation, and before all the Egyptian people. This drives large sectors of the people to refrain from these comic elections. Further complication comes from the government's insistence on the presence of stuntmen candidates in a failed attempt to whiten the face and get out of the predicament it made by itself.
The Party holds responsible the authority and state organs and institutions, especially security and media agencies, responsible for the siege of all outlets for political and public work, which weakened the possibility of opposition candidates submitting programs for the poor and popular classes, and expose the elements that took advantage of the election to cooperate with the Moslem Brotherhood and both domestic and foreign enemies of homeland, isolating them politically and popularly, rather than the wrong practices of  the regime which in practice allows them fertile ground to continue their plans and plots.
For all of the above and after extensive discussions in party bodies in the different provinces, the Egyptian Communist Party declares boycotting these elections, confirming that this position is in line with our categorical rejection of these abovementioned practices. This is aimed at mobilizing all popular efforts and working together with national political parties and forces, by all peaceful and democratic means to change the democratic, economic and social path, while recognizing the need for a comprehensive confrontation of terrorism and foreign schemes aimed at the destruction and division of countries in the region, radically different from positions of forces of political Islam and its allies of anarchists and collaborators at home and abroad.
Our party stresses the fact that these elections are not the end, and calls for unification of efforts of all national democratic forces, at the heart of which are leftist forces, to continue the struggle to achieve the demands of the two revolutions of the Egyptian people,
-          Achieving real social justice embodied by concrete policies, laws and procedures biased towards the poor, proletariat and productive classes. As an alternative to policies of the regime that reflect a clear bias of the large capitalist class affiliated thereto, being subject to the brutal neoliberal policies, programs and conditions imposed by the IMF and monopolistic capitalism institutions on our country.
-          Completing sustainable comprehensive development, based on a productive not a rental economy, established on the concept of self-reliance basically, and to mobilize national efforts and people energies in the face of attempts at annexation and economic dependence that destroy any possibility of progress, comprehensive and decisive confrontation to corruption and monopoly, taking advantage of relationships of unconditional cooperation in a multipolar world.
-          The overall confrontation of terrorism, not being limited to security confrontation despite its importance, and rejecting any reconciliation with the terrorist Brotherhood and its allies of political Islam organizations and their parties, which must be resolved according to the Constitution.
-          Respect and activation of the articles of the Constitution, abolition of all restrictions and practices delimiting freedoms, activating democracy of popular participation through parties, unions, federations and civil society organizations.
-          Confronting Zionist-American schemes targeting Egypt, the Arab region and liquidating Palestinian cause.
-          Reviving the national culture and enhancing the value of citizenship in order to enhance the spirit of national belonging in the face of the culture of dependency, and the terrorist expiatory obscurantist thought.
"Democracy of popular participation , not the practices enshrining totalitarian rule, is the only way to achieve these goals and preserve the Egyptian state and protect it from external and internal risks." 

Cairo - January 29, 2018.
Egyptian Communist Party Politburo.