Ahmad Shafiq, Egypt’s former presidential candidate has exposed details of a counter-revolution that the Egyptian government has planned against the January revolution. Shafiq has reappeared after a suspicious disappearance with a ‘bombshell’ that could thwart the coup’s supporters’ plans.
Egypt’s al Youm 7 newspaper revealed that Shafiq now supports General Sami Annan, the president’s former chief of staff. According to the newspaper Shafiq has decided to put his services to the use of Annan’s campaign.
It is not strange that Shafiq should support Annan, they both belong to the same military generation but the surprise is Shafiq’s retreat from support of General Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi’s presidential bid. Shafiq’s shift has revealed possible plans by the military to reorder roles within the military establishment. Shafiq’s support for Annan indicates that the military’s bet on Al-Sisi’s presidential candidacy may have shifted to Annan instead.
Shafiq’s, a popular figure among the remnants of Mubarak’s regime, support for Annan’s candidacy indicates that Annan might just become the newly favoured candidate by the military and former regime.
The next few days will reveal the validity of these possibilities, particularly the media’s handling of the news and the way it addresses Annan, who previously came under sharp criticism for publishing part of his memoirs and proposing himself as a strong contender against Al-Sisi.
If the Egyptian media begin to gloss over Annan, this would demonstrate a consensus, among the former regime and the military, to substitute Al-Sisi with Annan. If the media escalated its attack against him, it would signal the deep differences between the coup leaders over Al-Sisi’s and Annan’s candidacy. Either way Al-Sisi’s path towards Egypt’s presidency will not be as smooth as he might hope.