Popular singer enters contest to be Egypt's president
Egypt's presidential election campaign took an unexpected turn Tuesday as popular singer Saad al-Soghair announced his candidacy, claiming to have gathered the signatures of 55,000 voters in support of his bid, dpa reported.
Al-Soghair, a pop star from Cairo's working class Shubra al-Kheima district, was accompanied by pipers and drummers as he made his way to the electoral committee's headquarters.
The singer said that his decision to run for president came after he saw candidates from numerous other occupations putting themselves forward.
If anyone objected, he said, they should blame the framers of the electoral law, who did not lay down strict qualification requirements.
Al-Soghair promised that, if elected, he would give up his musical career and devote himself to serving the public. He said his first priority as president would be to ensure free health care for all.
Al-Soghair said he summarized his campaigning programme in a new song, in which he promises every citizen an apartment and a licensed motorbike taxi.
Nominations to the Egyptian presidential election will close on April 8. So far, over 1,200 potential candidates have requested nomination papers from the electoral commission, but only nine have actually submitted formal nominations.
Candidates not nominated by political parties or members of parliament must gather the signatures of 30,000 voters to run.