The elections held under the new system proved a failure, the Christians refusing to go to the polls, and for the next five years Crete was governed absolutely by a succession of Mahommedan Valis.
It really, however, had the effect of centralizing the whole power of the country more absolutely than ever in the sultan's hands, since the Valis were wholly in his undisputed power, while the ex officio official members of the local councils secured a perpetual Mussulman majority.
Meanwhile, within the empire, ambitious valis were one by one attempting to carve out dominions for themselves at the expense of the central power.
Mehemet Ali was fully conscious that the empire which he had so laboriously built up might at any time have to be defended by force of arms against his master Sultan Mahmud II., whose whole policy had been directed to curbing the power of his too ambitious valis, and who was under tha influence of the personal enemies of the pasha of Egypt, notably of Khosrev, the grand vizier, who had never forgiven his humiliation in Egypt in 1803.
The inherent viciousness of these expedients had, however, not as yet been revealed by their inevitable results, and Mehemet Ali in the eyes of the world was at once the most enlightened and the most powerful of the sultan's valis.