Optimistic about democratic future, “despite a few hiccups”: President Waheed

President Mohamed Waheed Hassan has stated that he is considering contesting in the upcoming presidential elections “in view of the current achievements and the general reading [he] gets from the public,” adding, however, that “much work has still to be done during the next few months.”

Although the Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) has previously stated that Waheed could contest as the party’s candidate if he became a member, local media has recently reported that Waheed is considering running through his own 3217-member strong Gaumee Ithihaad Party (GIP).

GIP has recently announced that it is seeking to form coalitions with other political parties.

“Democracy is in its infancy [in the Maldives]. Despite a few hiccups, I am very optimistic about our democratic future,” Waheed stated in an interview with AFP, one year following the contentious transfer of power on February 7, 2012.

Waheed, who was Vice President during the previous administration, was sworn in as President after former President Mohamed Nasheed resigned following street protests and a police mutiny.

The Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) has maintained that the transfer of power was brought about through a coup d’etat. However, the Commission of National Inquiry(CNI), a Commonwealth-backed inquiry established by Waheed, concluded that the transfer of power was legal.

The credibility of the CNI report is now being challenged by parliament’s Executive Oversight Committee, after six of the country’s most senior police and military intelligence figures testified that none of their evidence was included in the final report. All six have since been suspended or dismissed.

Nasheed, again the presidential candidate of the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP), has an ongoing trial against him for the arrest of Criminal Court Chief Justice Abdulla Mohamed. The MDP contend that the charges are a politically motivated attempt to prevent him from contesting the election.

According to AFP, Waheed said his full year in office was “marked by ‘inclusiveness’, while rejecting opposition claims that he was stifling individual freedoms and had become a hostage of Islamic extremists.”

During the past year, Waheed has ratified the “Freedom of Peaceful Assembly” bill, which redefines limitations on assembly and political gatherings.

MDP Spokesperson Hamid Abdul Ghafoor previously alleged that the ratification of the said bill was “a direct response to the MDP’s proposed revolution.”

“We are not happy with this bill, and on principle alone we are against it. The current government feels the need to restrict freedom of expression and unwind the democratic gains of this country,” Ghafoor alleged.

“As our honeymoon with democracy nears its end, I am convinced that a new model for true democracy will glow from these islands,” Waheed said.

In response to Waheed’s remarks, Ghafoor said that Waheed seemed to be in “a state of total denial.”

“Waheed became president through a coup d’etat, completely wrecked our economy, made a pact with the Islamists, caused foreign investors to lose confidence, and inflation is rocketing. He has done everything a liberal democratic leader would never do,” Ghafoor alleged.

Correction: An earlier version on this article mistakenly reported that GIP has 2099 members. The party has 3217 members.


23 thoughts on “Optimistic about democratic future, “despite a few hiccups”: President Waheed”

  1. How biased does a paper have to be to have what the opposition says as the blurb for this headline on its front page. Further Gaumee Iththihaad has more than 3000 members. It doesn't mention the Parliamentary committee is MDP controlled, and it claims the ex military and police had "none" of their testimony included, when it was, except for these specific claims of a supposed assassination plot which no one believes. This shoddy biased reporting which puts this paper to shame. This entire article is just an excuse to spread MDP propaganda rather than do any real reporting.

  2. Dear Ali, pls dont bother about it.
    This whole "newspaper" is a farce, it is not registered anywhere, has no accredited journalists. Its aim is just to spread MDP propegenda abroad and and for party activists to see what their spokesman says about an issue..

  3. Ali. If you know the journalist Mariya who has written this article you would know not to bother with that comment. Minivan news is hopelessly biased towards MDP.

  4. It appears Ali & Ainth are newcomers to this extensively read and respected online news website that have been around for over 7 years. Minivan News ushered in a totally new mindset, a totally different language to replace the Junta culture of media and governance. Welcome to the real world. And what a day to make your debut!

  5. The usual sponsored commentators from the UNELECTED regime make it their priority to get their comments posted first to skew or invalidate any journalism that supports democracy.
    These characters are mindless Barbarians whom have taken the office by gun, as they were defeated by the vote despite their systematic bribery and threats. Today is the anniversary that democracy was taken from us and the coup regime destroyed all of our human rights and wrecked the economy for their own gain. One day the world will understand the injustice that has taken place here.

  6. I suggest Ali and Ainth to stick to Haveeru and Sun. I don't think this is the place for you. Good luck. Enjoy the adventures.

  7. ''The credibility of the CNI report is now being challenged by parliament’s Executive Oversight Committee.....''

    The truth is the committee is fully controlled by MDP and the Committee chair is thoddoo honorable watermelon Ali Waheed

  8. "... I am convinced that a new model for true democracy will glow from these islands,” Waheed said.

    I have a sense of deja vu, for some reason, and I just realised why. It was the old dictator Gayyoom who said that he introduced democracy to the Maldives, and it was a totally new style of democracy, carefully crafted by himself. Now, Waheed is promising that there is yet another "new model" for "true democracy" to come out of the Maldives.

    The world had better watch out. The Maldives will be spinning out the "model for true democracy", anytime now. I'm sure in the future history books will mark Maldives as the birth place of democracy (and not Greece). Gayyoom and Waheed will be credited as fathers of this new model.

    Centuries of joy await the world, under the Maldivian style of democracy! Can't wait... Gangnam style...

  9. Waheed only sees "a few hiccups"? I see a power hungry thief who actively instigated the army and police to mutiny.

    This is not a hiccup. This is a crime punishable by death.

  10. Wonder who would be foolish enough to make any coalition someone who "pufted" his president to be come president?
    It seems that as the D day is closing in, Waheed will have more hiccups coming up!
    Bega! Bega! Bega!

  11. There is only one version of democracy, one person one vote. Waheed is an idiot and traitor.the old dictatorship is back.

  12. A well played drama by Raees Nasheed, Dr.Waheed and Yameen!!! Financed by? you know who all! Mission Objective? Suppress the silent revolution of middle and lower income classes and sustain in power for these families! Why Dr.Waheed? becoz Nasheed failed badly due to his Nacharangy nights and drinks. Who to come next? Dictator Gayoom's brother! End of story? History to repeat with more bloodshed! Outcome: Secularize the country and pay way for the lucifer worshipers!

  13. Maldives is supposedly going democratic. But ideologically this is in direct violation with Islamic principles.

    And yet, Maldives wants to stay a 100% Islamic Nation, even if it has to be forced.

    1+1 equals to 2, yet you are forcing it to be equal to 3.

    That is the first hypocrisy that needs to be resolved. Then, depending on the path, either Islam will flourish, or Democracy (people power) will flourish.

    Face the reality, people.

  14. @Ali

    No one believes the assassination plots and therefore those statements by top officers of the military and police were not included? What a joke! So only the statements that are approved to be real by the CONI report writers are worth including? How unbiased is that sort of reporting? By the way there are thousands of Maldivians who believe those little exceptions they omitted. Don't be such a coward.

  15. Democracy my arse, a president with the least votes ever cast running the country isn't a democratic society it's a dictatorship.

  16. Hick ups? Time to "smash" some more innocent people..... NO MORE!! One bitten twice shy..

  17. Yes this Minivan is Nasheed propaganda machine and 90% of their new are Nasheed promotion propaganda.

    many of the people who commenting here are corrupt people from Nasheed regime .

    These people will never have any tolerance to digest anything against them and Nasheed.

    I do not understand how democratic it can when they are now able to digest any sort of criticism towards them.

  18. @neroma: Insightful analysis about the suppression of the lower income earners.

    I don't think its a thought out conspiracy as much as it is an outcome of the nature of 'polis...'

    Democracy is very rarely truly democratic.

    I tend to be on the left, a soft lefty if you like, not a hard one like a commy. I am however a member of a workers union.

    But even unions have become exploitative businesses. We pay exorbitant union fees for little in return usually.

    The poor and oppressed have nearly always been pawns in struggles between the rich and powerful. Marx was not from the 'proletariat...' The vast majority of historically significant left wing leaders in places Communism or the left wing won were aristocrats, using the plight of the poor and oppressed to re-empower themselves against the nouve' rich.

    Much the same in Maldives,even if Anni and MDP wanted to empower the poor and oppressed, they depend on the wealth of the rich to do so, so in the end, the rich determine policy no matter who is in power. What appears to be empowerment of the poor ends up being for the eventual security and power of the rich, in the vast long run, the poor end up often being further enslaved by moves to so called help them.

    However if the poor and oppressed can unite and can be resistant and strong enough, genuine power can be taken for the poor and oppressed, but the poor have to take the power themselves.

  19. How about Maldives to become Maldives Pvt Ltd? Maldives does not have a capacity to function as a fully fledged country with basic ingredients to be called a country. Maldive’s uniqueness has to utilized, forget this democracy with constitution and police and president and legislature. Under Maldives Pvt Ltd,we can sublease all atolls to other sub companies to run their affairs with the assets of Sandy beaches, reefs, seas and Islands which will be used as trading commodities. They can sell, lease these commodities internationally and the dividends will be distributed to all share holders (the residents of each geographical location that comes under the sub companies)
    Maldivian are not accustomed to this politics with political hierarchy to respects some people as our leaders whom we select. Every one of us have been living under very strange circumstance where we have never been subjected to live under any governing body who led us as leaders to reach to a common goal.
    We don’t have to cut and paste the systems that has been devised and used by subspecies of our foreign kind who have no ability to translate what is cooked in our brains. Let’s be scientific and accept the fact the universe came out of nothing and transforming with natural laws which no one can bend and rather we have to bend our self to go along with these laws.

  20. what a load of crap!! This is a coup regime. Those who did crimes should be brought to justice!!! President is elected by the people. And it is the people who should decide. Prez. Gayyoon nor can Not Prez Nasheed could decide. Gayyoom should not be afraid, Prz Nasheed participation. And Prez Nasheed should not be hesitant of anyone for Presidency. "Give peace a chance"

  21. "Hiccups?" Its more like a great big burp. A lot of undigestible stuff for Maldivians to digest. Like a new era of violence and a lost first stab at democracy. Yet like the stubborn race they are, they will endure. Time favors the patient. The majority of us are not corrupt to the core. Its a long long game. Waheed will go as he has come. Since Waheed will soon outlive his usefulness, the dictatorship will probably try to step in more fully in another still very visible guise.. ...and the rest is up to the rest of us... history in the making...ie never give up!


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