Yameen abandons boycott idea, endorses Muiz

Opposition coalition presidential candidate Malé City mayor, Dr. Mohamed Muizzu (R) and his running mate MP Hussain Mohamed Latheef (L) seen with Abdul Raheem Abdulla (Adhurey), the acting leader of the opposition coalition comprising of Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) and People’s National Congress (PNC). | Photo: Kuddi

The PPM/PNC coalition leader and former President Abdullah Yameen has abandoned his plan to boycott the presidential election and decided to support the PNC presidential candidate and Malé Mayor Dr. Mohammed Muizzu.

The PNC’s senate on Thursday approved the nomination of a separate candidate, if the coalition’s presidential candidate, Yameen, is unable to contest the election.

While it was decided that it was the last plan, the PPM leadership was saying that it would field a candidate if there was time. Following the Supreme Court ruling, Yameen handed over a notice to the PPM/PNC leadership to boycott the presidential election if the senate believes that his rights have been violated.

Muizzu submitted his candidacy form to the Election Commission (EC) today. When asked whether he submitted the form with Yameen’s support and consent, Muizzu said he would hold a press conference later to answer questions.

Shortly afterwards, Yameen’s senior lawyer and his running mate, former Vice President Mohammed Jameel Ahmed, tweeted that Yameen had changed his mind because the PPM Senate wanted to contest the election.

Yameen, who contested the 2013 and 2018 presidential elections as the PPM’s presidential candidate, was declared ineligible this time as he is serving an 11-year prison sentence.

The next contenders in the September 9 presidential election are MDP candidate and incumbent President Ibrahim Mohammed Solih, The Democrats’ Ilyas Labeeb and JP’s Qasim Ibrahim, Maldives National Party’s Mohammed Nazim, Maldives Reform Movement’s Faris Maumoon and former Home Minister Umar Naseer.