A spokeswoman from Shafiq’s campaign was unable to confirm the claim. Results of the two-day poll are expected from the country’s official electoral body from Sunday.
If the initial results hold, the two candidates will go to a second round run-off vote on June 16 and 17.
|Ex-PM Ahmad Shafiq|
Vote counting was underway on Friday after two days of polling in a landmark presidential election, the first since Mubarak was ousted last year.
50 million eligible voters were given the chance to cast ballots in a race that has been largely free of the violence and fraud that often marred elections before the January-February 2011 revolt.
Electoral commission officials said turnout was around 50 percent over the two days of voting on Wednesday and Thursday, with some voters queuing for hours to cast their ballots.
12 candidates were going on the presidential race. However the competition was generally limited between five nominees: former foreign minister and Arab League chief Amr Mussa; independent Abdel Moneim Abul Fotouh, who was a former member of the Brotherhood and Nasserist candidate Hamdeen Sabbahi, in addition to Mursi and Shafiq.
“CONFIDENT MURSI IS LEADING”
Shortly after the polling stations closed at 9:00 pm (1900 GMT) Thursday, Brotherhood — using their formidable nationwide network to tally votes — predicted a win for Mursi.
“I am confident that as first indications show, our candidate is leading,” Essam al-Erian, vice chairman of the group’s political wing Freedom and Justice Party, told reporters, based on results from 236 out of 13,000 polling stations.
For her part, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton congratulated Egypt on its “historic” presidential election, and said Washington was ready to work with a new government in Cairo
“We will continue to stand with the Egyptian people as they work to seize the promise of last year’s uprising and build a democracy that reflects their values and traditions, respects universal human rights, and meets their aspirations for dignity and a better life,” Clinton said in a statement.