Middle East

Profile: Egypt's Al-Tagmmu Party

Al-Tagmmu is a leftist party that favours a big role for the state in the economy.

It was established in 1976 and is headed by Riffat El-Said.

It has competed in many previous parliamentary elections, but generally won few seats.

It has a membership of about 22,000.

Programme and goals

Al-Tagmmu calls for a civil state based on citizenship and equality.

Its programme highlights the importance of democracy and peaceful transfer of power.

It has stressed the crucial role of the state in supporting poor people through micro-enterprise projects.

It wants to revise educational syllabuses of religious books in schools, and has called for promoting democracy through education in both schools and universities.

Funding

Although the party has financial difficulties, it has branches in 25 of the 27 governorates in Egypt.

But it has only managed to place candidates in seven districts.

The party relies on members' subscriptions and donations. Its financial problems have been an important reason behind poor showing in previous elections.

Electoral Alliances

Image caption Farida Al-Naqqash says she expects her party to win 20 seats

The party is a part of the Egyptian Bloc. It is the smallest party in the Bloc in terms of candidates, with just 10% of the total.

It joins the other two parties in the Bloc, the Free Egyptians party and the Egyptian Social Democratic party, in affirming the concept of a civil state based on citizenship and equality.

It was a member of the Democratic Alliance led by the Freedom and Justice party, but they withdrew from it.

Farida Al-Naqqash, a member of the party's political bureau, explained to BBC that "when the Freedom and Justice party raised religious slogans during demonstrations, we decided to leave the alliance since it is against our vision of a civil state".

Women and Copts

The party has a history of putting women and Copts as party candidates, reflecting their belief of the role of women in society and the equality between Copts and Muslims as Egyptians.

The party has seven Copts and six women as candidates out of a total of 70 candidates.

Constitutional principles document (El-Silmi)

The party expressed their reservation on articles 9 and 10 of the document, which give the army immunity from parliamentary oversight.

But it approved the document overall, backing the direct appointment of 80 out of the 100 members of the constitutional committee that will write the new constitution.

The party fears a constitutional committee or a parliament controlled by Islamists.

Chances in the parliament

The party is optimistic regarding its chances in these elections, with Farida Al-Naqqash expecting 20 seats.

This is more than the party has won in the past, though this time being within the Egyptian Bloc could count in its favour.