USAID funds Egypt’s presidential elections with $3 million

The Egypt director of the US governmental aid organization said it has provided US$3 million to the high elections commission to fund the presidential elections scheduled for 23 and 24 May.

"The organization has collaborated earlier with a number of agencies and local organizations to supply the presidential elections commission with needed devices and electoral materials such as glass boxes, phosphoric ink, seals and locks to the boxes," USAID Cairo director Walter North told Al-Masry Al-Youm.

North said that most of the aid money went towards purchasing the glass boxes, but part of it also financed a number of voter awareness campaigns encouraging participation in the electoral process. The campaigns used billboards, newspaper ads and TV and radio commercials.

North said there were no plans for USAID to help monitor elections as of yet.

"The organization has not received any proposals from any local or international organization to fund election monitoring, and therefore its role is limited to the technical support of the presidential elections commission," he said.

According to the USAID website in Egypt, US aid to the civil sector in Egypt is approximately $250 million yearly, 8 percent of which is allocated to support the democratic process and electoral activities.

Edited translatin from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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