The Dhivehi Qaumee Party (DQP), led by former Attorney General Dr Hassan Saeed, has released a statement saying that the party fully supports Addu becoming a city, but only if it was accomplished through lawful procedure.
Following the President’s first declaration that Addu would become a city prior to the local council elections, DQP Deputy leader Imad Solih filed the issue in the Civil Court stating that the President had not followed correct procedures and that therefore his declaration was invalid.
On Sunday, the Civil Court ruled in DQP’s favour and overturned the President’s decision to make Addu a city.
Adduans and ruling-party activists gathered near Dr Hassan Saeed’s house after the court ruling, and called for DQP to be abolished. Saeed is himself a prominent Adduan.
”The Decentralisation Act was drafted by the government and was ratified by the president,” observed DQP in a statement today. ”The Act very clearly states how cities should be determined in different parts of the Maldives.”
DQP said that if the government was unhappy with the procedure mentioned in the Act, it had the option to propose amendments to the Act.
”There are five ruling party MPs representing Addu in parliament, and to date they have not proposed any amendments to the Local Council Act,” the statement said. ”The President or anyone else should not be acting against the law.”
The party called on the government to cease its attempts “to create civil unrest.”
The Civil Court ruled that Addu could not be declared a city until it met unspecified requirements stipulated by the Local Government Authority. Home Minister Hassan Afeef, the sole member of the authority, yesterday published these requirements in the gazette and President Nasheed officially declared Addu a city for a second time.
However the Elections Commission has now stated that this will require it to redo the voter registration process, potentially delaying the elections by two months.