Political leaders and political parties of Egypt

Major political parties:

National Democratic Party (ruling party), Wafd Party, Tagammu and Party.

The NDP was originally established by Sadat, and it has remained in power since 1978.

The largest legal opposition party, though not very powerful, is the revived Wafd Party. The Wafd arose in 1978, after the original Wafd Party was outlawed in 1952.

The main challenge to the regime comes from Islamic groups, especially the Muslim Brotherhood. Although illegal since 1954, the Muslim Brotherhood parliamentary candidates run as independents in order to get around the problem. In the November-December 2005 parliamentary elections, the Bortherhood made strong gains. In the past the Gamaat Islamiyya has been the most extreme and violent group, but in March 1999 its leadership renounced armed operations.

Major Political leaders

Hosni Mubarak: He is the supreme power in the country. The president appoints the vice-president, the prime minister and the other ministers, as well as the provincial governors, High Court judges and major religious figures. He is also the supreme commander of the armed forces.

Ahmed Nazif: Became prime minister in July 2004. With a technocratic and IT background, he is expected to push ahead with privatisation and shifting Egypt towards a more knowledge-based economy. He retained his post after the November-December 2005 general elections.

Gamal Mubarak: The president's son, he has been central to reform within the ruling NDP and is head of its powerful Policy Committee. Now second only to his father in terms of political power, health concerns over President Mubarak have renewed speculation that Gamal may be being groomed as a successor.

Habib al-Adly: He has been interior minister since November 1997, a post he retained after the 2005 elections.

Last Updated on Friday 13th November 2009