World Bulletin / News Desk
For the first time, a woman is running for the leadership of the political party of the Muslim Brotherhood, Egypt’s most powerful group.
Sabah Al Saqari says she wants to increase female participation in politics and even defends a woman’s right to run for president.
A 22-year veteran of the Brotherhood, Al Saqari is running to become chairman of the Freedom and Justice Party, which the Brotherhood set up after the fall of autocratic leader Hosni Mubarak in February last year. The party has become the vehicle through which the Brotherhood — banned and oppressed for decades under Mubarak — has rode to power.
The internal party election, scheduled for October 19, is to replace Mohammed Mursi, who held the chairman post until he took office in late June as Egypt’s first freely elected president.
Al Saqari’s candidacy is largely symbolic. She is seen as having no chance to win in the face of two heavyweight candidates competing for the post — senior Brotherhood figures Essam El Erian and Saad El Katatni. A lesser known party member, Khaled Awda, is also running.