Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi
has been re-elected with 97 per cent of
votes, the same proportion that the former
military commander secured four years ago
for his first term, official results showed
However, turnout was lower at 41 per
cent, despite efforts to get as many
Egyptians as possible to polling stations
during last week's vote. Sisi had been
virtually guaranteed a landslide win,
confirmed by early tallies as voting ended
Reuters Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi
has been criticised for his crackdown on
media and Coptic Christians, who are heavily
persecuted, claim he is not doing enough to
The election featured only one other
candidate - himself an ardent Sisi supporter
- after all serious opposition contenders
halted their campaigns in January. The main
challenger was arrested and his campaign
manager beaten up, while other presidential
hopefuls pulled out, citing intimidation.
Sisi said he had wanted more candidates
to run and that he had had nothing to do
with the opposition withdrawals.
The election commission said the vote was
free and fair as it gave the results in a
televised announcement on Monday.
The lower turnout is a potential setback
for Sisi, who suggested before the vote that
he saw it as a referendum on his presidency
rather than a genuine contest. Turnout in
the 2014 vote that won him his first term
was 47 percent.
State media had portrayed failure to vote
as a betrayal of Egypt. Some voters said
they were offered incentives to cast their
ballots including money and food, local and
international media reported, but did not
say who had made the offers.
Officials said that if any such incidents
took place they were not state-sponsored and
Critics say former general Sisi's
popularity has eroded amid tough economic
reforms, which have left most Egyptians
worse off, and also an unprecedented
crackdown on dissent.
His supporters say those measures are
needed to stabilise the country, which faces
a stubborn Islamic State insurgency in the
northern Sinai Peninsula and which was
rocked by unrest after a 2011 uprising that
ousted veteran leader Hosni Mubarak.
Sisi led the 2013 military overthrow of
Egypt's first freely-elected president,
Mohamed Mursi of the Muslim Brotherhood,
after protests against Mursi. Sisi swept to
victory in an election a year later with 97
percent of the vote.
The United Nations expressed concern over
the crackdown on dissent, including media,
which took place before last week's vote.
Sisi's main Western and regional allies
have been mostly silent over alleged human
rights abuses in Egypt.
During voting last week, the US embassy
in Cairo said on Twitter it was 'impressed
by the enthusiasm and patriotism of Egyptian
Russia congratulated Sisi on his election
win ahead of the official results.