15 April 2012
The MDP strongly recognizes the peaceful and calm voting environment during the ongoing bi-elections in the Maldives today. Furthermore, MDP once again calls on all its members and voters to remain calm and to show maximum restraint for the remainder of the day. MDP also reiterates its full confidence in the country’s first independent election commission to ensure the upcoming bi-elections to be largely free and fair.
The MDP has consistently called for early Presidential elections in the Maldives to resolve the political deadlock that exists since the unlawful transfer of power on 7 February following police and military backed coup in the Maldives.
Elections today are held at a time when Mr. Gayyoom has publicly stated early Presidential elections would not be held in the Maldives citing conditions for elections are not right and also that elections commission does not have the capacity to hold early elections in the Maldives. MDP strongly disagreeing with this view, notes that today’s election is entirely disproving his statement. “It is very clear from what we are seeing at the polling stations that the conditions exist and that we must urgently hold Presidential elections in the Maldives to return to democracy”said Hamid Abdul Ghafoor, MDP’s spokesperson for international affairs.
The MDP and international bodies including the Commonwealth and the European Union has publicly called on the Maldivian authorities to urgently ensure free expression of the popular will of the people through elections as soon as possible.
‘Noting the peaceful and calm voting environment in the Maldives today, we are concerned that our supporters are fearful of what the authorities might do to aggravate and provoke people to deliberately incite violence and then say conditions are not right to hold early Presidential elections in the Maldives. They have” said Mr. Ghafoor.
Hamid Abdul Ghafoor
Spokesperson, International Affairs