Won’t be stopped, will scale up protests: Mayor Muizzu

Mayor of Malé City, Dr. Mohamed Muizzu seen at a protest calling for the release of former President Yameen. | Photo: PPM

Malé, Maldives – Mayor of Malé City, Dr. Mohamed Muizzu has told that they will not stop their work calling for Former President Abdullah Yameen’s release and that it will continue despite the government’s attempts to intimidate the opposition.

Yameen was sentenced to 11 years in prison on December 25, 2022 after being convicted of taking bribes and laundering the money on the lease of V. Aarah. He is serving his sentence in Maafushi jail.

The opposition PPM-PNC coalition has been holding a series of nightly protests in the city over Yameen’s 11-year jail sentence. Muizzu was arrested during the protest last night but was later released.

Speaking to reporters after his release, Muizzu said the protesters’ actions were within the legal framework and the protests would become stronger in the future.

He said that even if people are being arrested and intimidated, it is not a concern and that their work will stop after Yameen is released.

Muizzu said the government is now out of options and such uncivilized actions will strengthen the determination of the protesters.

Such uncivilized intimidation is not a matter of concern. Our ranks will be strengthened, our work will be strengthened. Our voice will not be silenced.

Mayor of Malé City, Dr. Mohamed Muizzu

Following Muizzu’s arrest last night, Malé City Council said in a statement that it believes this is a very irresponsible attempt to restrict the constitutional freedom of expression and to silence the mayor who was elected by the people of the city as their representative.

This is not what should happen in a democratic environment, the statement said.

While Yameen is the presidential candidate of the opposition, with the verdict, Yameen has faced legal obstacles to contesting next year’s presidential election.

The PGO also has another ongoing case against the Former President of accepting bribes worth MVR 117,000 during the lease of R. Fuggiri for the development of a tourist resort.