Egyptians Mock Sissi As Only Viable Candidate in Upcoming Elections

President Abdel Fattah al-Sissi
KHALED DESOUKI/AFP/Getty Images)

TEL AVIV — Egyptian activists have taken to social media to spread the hashtag “#you_cant_run_for_president_because,” mocking the upcoming elections they claim are being controlled by the military and other supporters of incumbent President Abdel Fattah al-Sissi.

One possible opponent, Ahmad Shafiq, the former prime minister under overthrown president Hosni Mubarak, was forced to give up his candidacy because of his expected extradition to Egyptian authorities from the United Arab Emirates. Then there is the case of Ahmad Konsowa, an Egyptian army officer who was sentenced to six years in prison for declaring his intention to run for the presidency while still in uniform.

Egyptian authorities also prevented former army chief Sami Anan from becoming a candidate in the elections. The military ruled that Anan had forged his release forms from the Egyptian army, disqualifying him from the presidential race.

The arrests of potential candidates have led social media users in Egypt and across the Arab world to address the developments that are expected to hang like a cloud over the presidential elections that are scheduled to be held in just a few months.

“They say there’s no other candidate,” Egyptian activist Awraq Yasmine posted to Twitter. “That’s it. Sissi has signed for ownership of Egypt. He also added all the other state institutions in the contract.”

“I would like to remind everyone, General Sissi said on August 19, 2013: ‘I swear there is no military regime in Egypt and the army has no desire to rule in Egypt,'” tweeted former student union vice president Ahmas al-Baqri.

The Al Jazeera network, which is opposed to the Egyptian administration, tweeted, “The laughter continues to accompany the presidential elections in Egypt. There is no candidate against Sissi.” Of course, hundreds of social media users were quick to respond and criticize the incumbent.

“Egypt has a president,” posted the account called In Love with Al-Aqsa. “History has shown the entire world that the legitimate president is Mohammed Morsi and he’s the only one who was prepared to confront the hegemony of the Zionist army. Well done to those who implanted us with national pride.”

Egyptian activist Amru Bek al-Awal wrote a sarcastic tweet alongside a photo of president Sissi drinking alcohol with a sad expression, apparently over the fact that he forced his former army colleague Anan to resign.

“Why Sami? Why are you the one challenging me? You could have been here at my side. Curse this seat (that distracted you).”

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