Egypt Independent

A clean election process: Lesson from the Wafd Party

I understand how sad Mahmoud Abaza may be to have lost the Wafd Party elections. This is normal and human, for people compete in elections with the hope of winning. Loss is bitter no matter how it happens. But in some battles, loss may be of greater importance than victory. I think that the Wafd Party election battle is one of those battles. The result of that election will go down in history as a bright spot in Egypt’s partisan life. It’s the first time that the president of a party has lost his presidency in elections that everyone described as transparent and characterized by integrity.

Egyptians in general, and not only Wafdists, were in need of such elections, especially at this time. In fact, this election sends the message that the Egyptian people want democracy, are prepared for it, and can exercise it. The allegations reiterated by the National Democratic Party (NDP) that Egyptians aren’t yet ready for democracy are groundless, and merely intended to secure the NDP’s grip on power.

The Wafd Party has emerged as a much stronger party after this election. I believe it will once again attract liberals who are still looking for a place on the current political map. But time is limited for the new Wafd leadership to prove that it can restore the party’s glamor. Everyone must cooperate to enable the Wafd to be a genuinely competitive party.

I hereby congratulate el-Sayyed el-Badawi on winning and Mahmoud Abaza for managing a successful and clean election process.

Translated from the Arabic Eiditon.