Supporters of recently excluded Salafi presidential hopeful Hazem Salah Abu Ismail will vote for the head of the Muslim Brotherhood’s political party, a senior Brotherhood member said Sunday.
“If Abu Ismail and Khairat al-Shater [another excluded presidential hopeful and Brotherhood senior adviser] are excluded from the race, the votes of Abu Ismail’s supporters will go to Mohamed Morsy,” said Brotherhood Shura Council member Ahmed Abdel Rahman, referring to the president of the Freedom and Justice Party.
The Presidential Elections Commission announced on Saturday it would exclude Abu Ismail, Shater and eight other hopefuls. It said they would be given 48 hours to appeal the decision with the commission.
Abdel Rahman told Al-Masry Al-Youm Morsy has a great chance to win, and that he is a respectful person with experience that qualifies him to be a successful leader.
“Mohamed Morsy and Abdel Moneim Abouel Fotouh [a former Brotherhood leader] will have great chances after exclusion of Abu Ismail,” said Mokhtar al-Ashry, head of the FJP’s legal committee, mentioning that Amr Moussa and Ahmed Shafiq will be their main competitors.
However, Haitham Abu Khalil, a former Brotherhood leading figure, called on the group to withdraw Morsy’s candidacy for the sake of the country.
Abu Khalil told Al-Masry Al-Youm that Morsy has a negative relationship with the group’s youth wing and that it would not be in the Brotherhood’s best interest for Morsy to run.
While Shater had a weak chance of winning, Morsy’s chances are nonexistent, he added.
Bahaa Neimatallah, a member of the group’s youth wing, said “Morsy doesn’t have charisma like Shater.
“For Brotherhood members, he is the group’s candidate,” he added. “They don’t see difference between Shater or Morsy because they consider the group’s candidate to be not a person but the whole group, and think that the candidate doesn’t represent a personal project but one of the group.”
Translated from Al-Masry Al-YoumTags: Mohamed Morsy, Muslim Brotherhood, Abu Khalil, Khairat al-Shater, Haitham Abu Khalil