The Democrats file civil suit against Elections Commission

MP Hassan Latheef with the membership forms to register 'The Democrats' at EC. Photo: Mihaaru News/Nishan Ali

The Democrats have filed a civil suit against the Election Commission (EC) for withholding their permission to form the party.

Henveyru West MP Hassan Latheef, who is leading the formation of the Democrats, said the party had submitted 3,000 signatures to the EC but the party was being delayed without any reasonable justification.

EC had completed the verification of the forms within two weeks but has withheld permission to form the party.

He said the three months given by the law to the EC to grant formation approval is a period for verification of the forms. Therefore, once the work is completed, there is no legal basis for withholding further party formation. The case has now been filed in the Civil Court, he said.

The Democrats filed the case in Civil Court and the Election Commission yesterday decided to allow the party to hold a registration meeting on the second day of next month. The party submitted 3,560 forms to the EC on 24th last month.

Democrats were concerned about the delay in granting the party permission due to differences of opinion within the Election Commission. Some members of the commission also refused to attend the meetings, saying the commission chairman was acting under influence in giving permission to the party.

EC Vice-President Ismail Habeeb tweeted that the EC has informed the applicant that it has decided to grant permission to form a political party called The Democrats next week.

While The Democrats aim to contest this year’s presidential election, the party is led by former President Mohammed Nasheed. Nasheed left the MDP on 21st of this month. The election will be held on September 9.