When Shafiq sought MB backing

When Shafiq sought MB backing

From Egypt Independent's press review:

On a rather different note, everyone’s new favorite newspaper, the Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice (this reporter’s newspaper vendor says it outsells all other papers and that customers now suspect he’s hiding it because it’s always unavailable) puts a picture of none other than Ahmed Shafiq on its front page, the last person one would expect to see.

The reason why the almost-president-of-Egypt is there is because Brotherhood member Hassan Malek is spilling the beans on a meeting he had with Shafiq before the nominations for the presidential election began. And what a story it is.

According to Malek, Shafiq called him and asked for a meeting in July 2011 (that year again), which happened at the house of a “mutual friend.” During the meeting Shafiq asked Malek for the Brotherhood to back his candidacy for the presidency. He also requested a meeting with Mohamed Morsy and Saad al-Katatny to ask them their opinion on his candidacy because “if they don’t agree then I won't do it.” Malek then purportedly told him that it wouldn’t be a good idea because his connection with Hosni Mubarak had “burned him.” Malek then informed the other Brotherhood members of Shafiq’s wish to meet them and they refused.

And it doesn’t end there. Shafiq apparently wouldn’t take no for an answer and kept calling Malek, at one point urging him to arrange a surprise meeting at his house, before chiding Malek by saying, “Are you stingy or what?” Malek then met him again to convey the Brotherhood’s polite refusal to meet him. Politics and gossip can sometimes be one and the same.

There are no permanent friends or enemies in Egyptian politics, just permanent personal interests.