Malé, Maldives – MP for Medhu Henveiru Constituency Ali Azim has stated that voter turnout was low during last Saturday’s elections as citizens were concerned as there were talks about Former President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom’s release from prison.
He said this today at Parliament, where discussions were held on Yameen’s transfer to home arrest. Azim, who is also MDP’s Parliamentary Group leader, acknowledged PPM’s commendable achievements in the local council elections, while also stating that he does not believe the election was an overall loss for MDP.
Azim revealed that MDP lost in Malé due to a number of reasons. While MDP was speaking on stopping theft and corruption in addition to handing out justifiable punishment to individuals who have commited said crimes before.
However, while this was being said, rumors of Yameen – who is serving a 5 year jail sentence for money laundering, being released from jail stopped many from voting according to Azim, who added that others convicted of similar crimes being free from prison was also a contributing factor.
” There is no need to say that people who voted at the local council elections voted to free Yameen Abdul Gayyoom. Rather, it was to arrest more like him”Ali Azim
Azim stated that the people did not vote as they were opposed to the release of Yameen, and as the incumbent administration is late in stopping such crimes. He added that citizens are worried about continued theft, and while this occurs even in the current administration, it is around “80 percent lower” than before.
He stated that even if MDP suffered a loss in in the Local Council elections, they will continue forward to look into theft and corruption cases and provide justice for families of kidnapped individuals.
Azim noted that these crimes were committed with the involvement of higher ups in the previous administration, and thus were covered up to a great extent. He added that solving these problems will take some time.