Dozens of university students protested outside the Higher Education Ministry Wednesday against a ministry order indefinitely postponing student union elections.
The angry student bodies claim the move ignores the agreed upon voting system and was made in response to requests from Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated students.
Supervisors for the Federation of Egypt Student Union said Tuesday that the vote to select the union's executive board was being postponed because none of the candidates had obtained an absolute majority.
A legal official observing the process had said earlier that a 50+1 majority would be applied to win the union’s presidency.
But sources close to the polls said the delay came under pressure from students affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood, who want the next union president to achieve a two-thirds majority.
Elections for student unions at universities nationwide have witnessed a remarkable drop in support for Brotherhood-linked students. In greater Cairo and Alexandria they won less than 30 percent of seats.
Islam Fawzy, who leads the Helwan University student union, claimed that Brotherhood students smashed ballot boxes after a quarrel with students belonging to other political groups. He also claimed the Sohag University student union head withdrew from elections in response to the Brotherhood's efforts to dominate the union.
Fawzy added that the majority of student unions heads voted for the 50+1 system, however, the legal supervisor insisted on the two-thirds majority to please the Brotherhood students.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm