Zeal gives way to dismay in Egypt runoff vote

Cairo: Three weeks ago, Tamer Fouad, a political science student, showed up at this polling station in northern Cairo two hours before it opened to vote in the first round of Egypt’s first presidential election since Hosni Mubarak’s ouster.

“I was enthusiastic [in] voting to Hamdeen Sabahi,” he said, referring to a leftist opposition leader seen by his supporters as a symbol of a popular revolt that deposed Mubarak.

Sabahi came in third after the Muslim Brotherhood’s Mohammad Mursi and Mubarak’s last premier, Ahmad Shafiq.

“My dream to see a new Egypt led by a revolutionary has been harshly shattered,” Fouad, 20, told Gulf News outside the almost-empty polling station on Sunday, the last day of a presidential runoff.

I’ve come not to vote for either contender. To me, they are worse than each other. I’m here today to invalidate my vote for fear that it may be rigged in favour of Mursi or Shafiq,” he added. Fouad’s view echoes many Egyptians’dissatisfaction with the two finalists.