Everyone who turns 18 by April 10 can vote: EC Shareef

Ahmed Shareef, President of Elections Commission | Photo: PSM

Malé, Maldives – President of Elections Commission, Ahmed Shareef has guaranteed that everyone turning 18 by April 10, can vote in the upcoming Local Council Elections (LCE) and and Women’s Development Committee (WDC) elections

Shareef has said this addressing the accusations made by the former Chief Justice of the Maldives, Dr. Ahmed Abdulla Didi, in a tweet stating that voting rights of some people over 18 are being lost in the upcoming elections.

Didi claims that due to the law made to postpone the elections by a year, the voting rights of those who turned 18 years old within the delayed period and candidacy rights provided by Article 26 of the Constitution of Maldives, have been denied.

All Maldivian citizens who turn 18 by voting date April 10, can vote in the election. This is an EC guarantee.

Ahmed Shareef, President of EC

The Local Council Election was originally supposed to be held on 4 April 2020, but due to the alarming increase of Covid-19 cases in Maldives, the country had gone into a lockdown, and the election was delayed by a year to 10 April 2021.

The Parliament had to pass a special bill due to the implications of Covid-19 in the elections, and this bill is to be followed for all incoming elections. The Local Council Election is to be held on April 10th.

While the upcoming Local Council Elections (LCE) and Women’s Development Committee (WDC) elections will be held according to the guidelines given by the Health Protection Agency (HPA), this time more ballot boxes would be places in different areas as the HPA guidelines does not allow people to travel from one island to another. The voters will also be required to adhere to guidelines such as maintaining social distancing and wearing masks.