Campaigning for Egypt's presidential vote underway

Campaigning is now underway in Egypt's presidential elections, a two-candidate vote that's virtually certain to be won by the incumbent, Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi.

The campaigning began Saturday and ends March 23.

El-Sissi is challenged by an obscure politician who entered the race in the eleventh hour to save the president and his government the embarrassment of a one-candidate election. A string of potentially serious challengers have been arrested or intimidated out of the race.

Hundreds of billboard advertisements in support of the incumbent have over the weekend have been mounted alongside existing ones on the streets of Cairo, almost all bearing the image of a smiling el-Sissi, with slogans focusing on the economy and security.

Campaign banners for the challenger, Moussa Mustafa Moussa, who is an ardent el-Sissi supporter, are conspicuously absent.