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Egypt Islamists seek more election gains

Sunday, January 29, 2012 - 01:21

Jan 29 - Egyptians turn out for latest polls to elect members of parliament's upper house, but low turnout suggests voters question election's significance. Jessica Gray reports.

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Egyptian voters head to the ballot boxes once again. On Sunday, elections opened for the upper house of parliament. Many believe Islamist groups like the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party will do well after a strong showing in lower house elections. Together the upper and lower house will pick a 100-member assembly to write Egypt's new constitution ahead of presidential elections slated later this year. Voters hope the new parliament, the first elected since the fall of former President Hosni Mubarak, will bring an end to corruption and waste. (SOUNDBITE)(Arabic) VOTER, HUSSEIN MOHAMED HASSAN, SAYING: "I have seen it all in my life, I'm 80 years old and I've seen many people, and many crooks, and many people who have no conscience. And I hope that God will improve our situation and bring us individuals who care for the people, and who work for the interests of the people. Am I right?" But Sunday's low turnout suggests voters do not think the latest polls matter since the upper house's power is limited and it cannot block legislation from the lower house. However, the upper house must be consulted before the lower house can pass any bills. Members of Islamist parties won more than 70 percent of seats in the lower house. Jessica Gray, Reuters

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Egypt Islamists seek more election gains

Sunday, January 29, 2012 - 01:21