18 March 2012
The Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) upholds the universal principle that the consent of the governed is the basis of any legitimate government.
MDP believes the current regime has no democratic legitimacy as it was instituted through the mutinous actions of the security forces, in effect overthrowing the first democratically elected President through a coup d’etat.
It is paramount that a regime that lacks the consent of the governed and that has robbed the People of their fundamental right to choose those who would govern them, must not have legitimacy conferred upon it by opening the People’s Majlis.
It is based on this democratic and moral principle that the MDP will not allow Dr. Mohamed Waheed to officially address the first session of the People’s Majlis for the current year.
In the greater national interest, for expediting the process to hold free and fair Presidential elections within the calendar year, as reiterated by the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group, the MDP is ready to reach a political solution by allowing the People’s Majlis to continue – as soon as the regime and those parties backing it commit to a date for early presidential elections.
MPD notes with regret that on several occasions, including in their protest on 24 February 2012, representatives of the political parties backing former Vice President Dr. Waheed have ruled out an early Presidential election. Former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, leader of PPM, publically announced on 6 March 2012 that he would not support an early Presidential election. PPM’s spokesperson MP Ahmed Mahlouf also publically ruled out early Presidential elections. Moreover, in an official press conference on 17 March 2012, Gayoom’s own daughter, Dunya Maumoon, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, rebuked the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group’s consistent calls for early Presidential elections before 2013, doubting the neutrality of their statement.
In view of these concerns, and as a measure to create confidence and show good faith, the MDP believes it is necessary for the regime to agree to hold Presidential elections, within this calendar year. MDP believes that the work of the Parliament can only be directed though political agreement on an early election date
MDP spokesperson for International Affairs, Hamid Abdul Ghafoor stated, “the talk of “Talks” can no longer continue to be a “PR” tactic to maintain the status quo of illegitimacy. Political leaders need to show sincerity in reaching a solution. The current regime clearly faces a crisis of legitimacy – with a large part of the population outright rejecting it. The only way to restore legitimacy and democracy is by giving the people, at the earliest possible opportunity, the opportunity to freely express their will through a popular vote. The MDP remains committed to the All Party Talks and the demonstration of the People’s will through peaceful political activities including protests.”
Hamid Abdul Ghafoor
Spokesperson, International Affairs