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svgadminsvgSeptember 27, 2011svgNews

Egypt Sets November 28 as Election Day

Egypt’s caretaker junta has November 28 as the date parliamentary elections will take place, the state’s news agency MENA reported Tuesday.

The election is expected to be held in three stages, which could take several weeks.

“The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces set November 28 as the date to start the first stage of the parliamentary election,” the agency said.

Senate elections will follow starting on January 29, the agency quoted a military official as saying.

The announcement comes after the caretaker cabinet voted on amending a contentious law under which two thirds of parliament will be elected through a proportional representation system and the rest via a simple majority.

More than two dozen political parties, including the powerful Muslim Brotherhood, have rejected the electoral law saying it could help return old regime figures to parliament.

Objecting parties are demanding new elections require voters to select party lists rather than individual candidates, but observers say such a move would give the people less choice, rather than more.

Meanwhile, a walkabout in central Cairo by Egypt’s military ruler Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi in civilian clothes has unleashed a torrent of questions about his political intentions.

Tantawi reportedly strolled casually in Cairo’s Downtown area on Monday evening wearing a business suit with no personal security in tow.

The uncharacteristic event, a picture of which appeared on the state-owned al-Ahram’s front page, set social networking sites ablaze with jokes and commentary.

That’s “Tantawi handing power to ‘civilian rule’,” wrote Adel on Twitter.

But political analysts say Tantawi, who has attempted to maintain Egypt’s economic and strategic status quo, may have civilian political ambitions for the future.

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