Faris Maumoon secures PPM ticket for Dhiggaru by-election

Former president Maumoon Abdul Gayoom’s son, Ahmed Faris Maumoon, has secured the ruling party’s ticket to contest the upcoming by-election for the vacant Dhiggaru constituency parliament seat.

Faris won a primary of the Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) held yesterday after competing against Meemu atoll council president Moosa Naseer.

Faris won the contest with 288 votes (66.98 percent) while Naseer received 140 votes (32.71). A total of 428 valid ballots were cast.

Polling took place in four of the five islands that make up the Dhiggaru constituency in Meemu atoll as well as in Malé.

Faris is a nephew of president Abdulla Yameen and a state minister at the ministry of economic development. His father, ex-president Gayoom, is also the leader of the PPM.

Three other candidates who initially sought the ruling party’s ticket withdrew their candidacies last week, including Meemu atoll councillor Moosa Naseer Ahmed and deputy environment minister Mohamed Hanim.

A primary of the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) is due to take place tomorrow to select a candidate to represent the main opposition party in the by-election.

The by-election, triggered by a 25-year jail sentence handed down to former ruling party MP Ahmed Nazim, is scheduled to take place on June 6.

Contestants must file candidacy papers at the Elections Commission before the end of April.