Omar Suleiman Announces Will Not Run for Egypt Presidency

Egypt former intelligence chief appointed vice president in last days of Mubarak's rule says wants to spend time to 'relax.. and look after his family'.

The man appointed as Egypt's vice-president in the last days of Hosni Mubarak's rule will not run for head of state in the upcoming elections later this year, a local newspaper reported on Friday.

Omar Suleiman, a former intelligence chief and one of Mubarak's closest confidants, was named for the number two job in a failed attempt to calm a popular uprising. It was Suleiman who announced that Mubarak was stepping down and handing over power to the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces on Feb. 11.

suleiman - Reuters - February 4 2011

"General Omar Suleiman has confirmed that he is not thinking of nominating himself for the presidency," Egypt's Al-Ahram daily said, quoting Suleiman, adding that he wanted to spend time to "relax ... and look after his family".

No date has yet been set for the presidential election, but the military council has said it will be held before the end of 2011.

Suleiman had never officially said he would run for president, but local media had cited him as a possible candidate. Some of his supporters launched campaigns on Facebook calling for him to tender his candidacy to be president.

Egypt's military rulers launched an online survey last month to test the popularity of potential presidential candidates that included Suleiman's name along with at least three other ex-military officers, alongside Islamists, judges, diplomats and other political figures.