Report: Al Jazeera provided ‘worst’ Egypt election coverage

Egyptians gather in Tahrir square to celebrate former Egyptian army chief Abdel Fattah al-Sisi's victory in the presidential vote in Cairo. (Reuters)

Al Jazeera Mubasher Egypt provided the least professional coverage of the recent Egyptian presidential election, a media watchdog said in a report released Tuesday.

Egypt’s Maat Foundation for Peace, Development and Human Rights, said coverage of the election by Al-Jazeera’s Mubashir Misr was “shockingly inconsistent on a professional, political and ethical level.”

Al Jazeera Mubashir Misr finished bottom of the list of 12 channels in the survey and obtained an overall score of 9, “proving a subjectivity of the media coverage of the channel” between May 24 and May 29.

The ranking was based on a number of factors including the "accuracy of information broadcast, language used by anchors and reporters, level of professionalism of the channel as well as objectivity and fairness of the programs," Ayman Akil, the director of the Maat Foundation, told Al Arabiya News.

Close monitoring

He added that all 12 channels had been closely monitored by Maat Foundation representatives.

Akil said Al Jazeera’s inability to accept the transition in Egypt had clouded its objectivity.

“By refusing the idea of transition in Egypt and insisting that what happened in July was a coup led by the military, they lost their ability to be objective,” Akil said.

“They portrayed Sisi as a criminal and dictator while accusing Sabahi of helping Sisi fake the democratic presidential election,” Akil said, adding that the channel used “inappropriate language.”

When Al Jazeera was contacted for comment on the subject, it gave no response.

Akil also said the ban on Al Jazeera operating in Egypt also factored into why it had failed to provide fair coverage of the presidential election.

In September, an Egyptian court ordered the closure of Al Jazeera Mubashir Misr, accusing it of spreading lies and false information to stir tension and cause panic.

In another development, television programs “The Egyptian scene” or “al hadith al Misry” on Al Arabiya News Channel’s sister channel Al Hadath and “Events in Egypt” or “Hadath fi Misr” were listed among the most professionals programs covering the presidential election, according to the same statement.

Al Arabiya News is the English online platform of Al Arabiya News Channel.

The Maat Foundation released a total of four reports regarding the media coverage of the electoral process.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:43 - GMT 06:43
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