Second phase of referendum in Egypt witnesses irregularities
Cairo: Amid allegations of irregularities, Egyptians on Saturday voted in the second and final round of a referendum on a controversial new Constitution backed by President Mohammed Morsi that has deeply divided the nation.
The second phase of referendum on the first post-revolutionary constitution in Egypt began this morning.
The referendum is being held in 17 governorates which hold half of Egypt`s electorate.
Ten governorates voted during the first phase last weekend, after which initial results showed a turnout of about 31 per cent and a prevalence of votes in favour of the draft by about 57 per cent.
The voting is taking place in 176 general polling stations and 6,274 sub-stations in Giza, Qalyubiya, Monufiya, Beheira, Kafr al-Sheikh, Damietta, Port Said, Ismailia, Suez, Marsa Matrouh, Red Sea, New Valley, Beni Suef, Fayoum, Minya, Luxor and Qena.
Egypt Independent provides updates on the voting process in those different places throughout the day.
As soon as the referendum started social media users were reporting irregularities in various stations.
The irregularities included absence of judicial supervision and guiding of voters to say yes.
Also some political groups, particularly Islamist ones, set up laptops near polling stations to help voters look up their number on voting lists.
The most serious irregularity was reported in Upper Egypt as well as Suez where Copts were said to have been kept from casting their votes.
The draft of the constitution has caused serious divisions in the country as it was drafted by an Islamist-dominated assembly from which representatives of the church and liberals withdrew.
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