Nasheed to contest MDP primary, campaign to start in Thinadhoo

Former President and Speaker of Parliament, Mohamed Nasheed after his return to Maldives after 3 years in November 1, 2018 | Photo: Nishan Ali

Malé, Maldives – MDP President and Parliament Speaker Mohammed Nasheed has decided to contest the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) primary to determine the candidate for the upcoming presidential election.

Nasheed announced his decision to contest the MDP presidential primary at a meeting with his closest associates yesterday evening.

Nasheed’s campaign is also scheduled to begin next Friday in GDh. Thinadhoo.

After deciding to contest the primary, Nasheed’s campaign team has also formed a WhatsApp group with some close associates. Screen shots of some of the conversations in the group have now been posted on social media.

Ahmed Shahid (Sabe), the nephew of President Nasheed and husband of Vice-President of Parliament Eva Abdullah, who is in charge of the MDP campaigns, said in the group that the group was also formed to secure votes for Nasheed and to try to re-register the 36,000 people who were allegedly cut off from MDP after Economic Minister Fayyaz Ismail was elected as the party chairperson.

While there has been a lot of talk lately that Nasheed is going to contest the primary, but the Speaker of the Parliament has not officially said anything about it. However, Nasheed has repeatedly said that he does not want to work with the incumbent President Ibrahim Mohammed Solih and cannot support him in the primary.

The MDP is now divided into two factions due to tensions between the President Solih and Speaker Nasheed.

MDP MPs, government ministers and members of the public who support President Solih, say the president should be given a second term. President Solih announced his candidacy for a second term in May this year.

President Nasheed resigned himself on February 7, 2012, midway through his first term in office. But later he said the government was overthrown by a coup.

The MDP presidential primary is scheduled to be held early next year but the exact date has not yet been announced.