The Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) said today it would not rule out forming a coalition with President Dr Mohamed Waheed or any other fellow government-aligned parties ahead of elections scheduled for September.
PPM MP Ahmed Nihan told Minivan News the party was already engaged in talks over the possibility of forming a power sharing agreement with other parties in the government of President Waheed.
Nihan said that after thousands of people attended a gathering held by the opposition Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) last Friday (April 19) to announce the signing of Parliamentary Speaker Abdulla Shahid, all political parties needed to reassess their views on power sharing.
Nihan’s comments were echoed this week by Home Minister Dr Mohamed Jameel Ahmed, who claimed that a changed political landscape since the country’s first multi-party elections in 2008, necessitated a willingness to share power more than ever.
“We have to recognise that the PPM and the MDP are the two major political forces in the country capable of winning elections. Hence, if the governing coalition desires to forge an alliance, it cannot realistically exclude the PPM from any such move. Whether a coalition, inclusive of the PPM can be realised prior to the elections is possible or not, we cannot alienate major political parties in an election,” he told Minivan News this week.
“Therefore, the role of smaller parties attempting to win an election of this scale without the inclusion of major political parties is in my opinion, a risky business,” Dr Jameel added.
While declining to give exact details on the nature of power sharing discussions currently held by the PPM, MP Nihan claimed the party’s supporters were divided on the need to form a coalition after considering the size of the crowd that attended Speaker Shahid’s inaugural address as an MDP member last week.
“We are not in a position to give the media more details on coalition talks as of today. However, the PPM has engaged in talks with various parties,” he claimed.
“Many of our supporters are divided over whether we need a coalition with the Jumhoree Party (JP) and other government parties. After the MDP rally [on Friday] there has been lots of speculation [about coalition forming]. Let’s not rule anything out.”
Nihan stressed that the PPM’s preferred option would be to stand individually in the first round of elections to try and secure an outright elections victory.
However, he claimed that the PPM’s founder, former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, had already explained within local media that the party remained open to the idea of forming coalitions with any party except the MDP.
Addressing speculation over the formation of a “broad coalition”, the government-aligned Dhivehi Rayyithunge Party (DRP) today said it had also been approached by representatives from President Waheed’s party over potentially standing in the election through a pwoer sharing agreement.
DRP Deputy Leader Mohamed Shareef said he did not wish to provide further details on discussions at present or confirm if any decision had been taken on entering a power sharing agreement.
However, discussing the DRP’s experiences as being part of the unity government of President Waheed, Shareef added that power sharing in the country was not without challenges.
“There are some who believe that the elections will be easier in a coalition. While they may be right, there have always been lots of differences of opinion in the current unity government,” he said.
Shareef added that in forming the current government – sworn in after former President Mohamed Nasheed resigned from office following a mutiny by sections of the police and military – there had not been any “formal discussions” on individual roles that would be taken by coalition members.
Shareef claimed that securing any future agreement between different political parties and their respective presidential candidates on who should lead any coalition would prove more difficult.
Shareef therefore said he believed that the PPM was one party that would only be interested in a coalition that stood behind its own presidential candidate, MP Abdulla Yameen.
“The PPM will not be interested unless people would back their candidate. They are presently the largest party [in the current government] and will believe everyone must follow them,” he said. “However, in a coalition everyone must be equal.”
Shareef claimed that a failure to listen to the opinions of coalition partners had led to the previous government, formed behind Mohamed Nasheed’s MDP, eventually alienating all other parties, before the administration was toppled last February.
Just last month, the DRP said it would reject any possibility of forming a coalition with the PPM beyond the present government, calling any discussion on the matter a “waste of time” considering previous disagreements between the two parties.
The PPM was formed by DRP founder, former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom in 2011 following an acrimonious war of words with the party’s current leader, Ahmed Thasmeen Ali. Thasmeen was directly appointed by Gayoom to be his successor as head of the DRP.
However, Shareef today refused to comment on speculation over any possible coalition agreement with the party.
At present, President Waheed’s GIP has formally agreed to stand in a coalition during the elections with the Dhivehi Qaumee Party (DQP).
Both parties, which have no elected representatives in parliament , currently face potential dissolution for lacking the minimum requirement of 10,000 members as stipulated in the recently passed Political Parties Act.
The religious conservative Adhaalath Party has also publicly pledged its support to President Waheed, last month announcing plans to form a coalition with the GIP.
Meanwhile, after the JP rejected speculation it would form a coalition with President Waheed last week, Party Leader and presidential candidate MP Gasim Ibrahim was later quoted in local media on Thursday (April 18) as saying he would consider power sharing. However, Gasim stated at the time that that he would not stand as a running mate in such a coalition.
Senior figures of the opposition MDP including former President Mohamed Nasheed claimed earlier this month that sharing cabinet positions among different political parties would not result in an efficient government in the Maldives.
Former President Nasheed stated at the time that leaders of different political parties had learned “bitter lessons” surrounding their inability to run a government by sharing cabinet positions among different political parties over the last four years.
“A cabinet in which one minister belongs to this party and another belongs to that party, cannot run a government,” he said.
Aerial view of an MDP rally held on Friday April 20 to welcome the signing of Speaker Abdulla Shahid:
19 thoughts on “Govt parties need to reassess power sharing, after thousands attend MDP rally: MP Nihan”
Forming a coalition among trust worthy people with a sharp leader will be good.
2008 Coalition was not just failed but was forced to fail by Nasheed due to his dictatorial attitudes.
Even he had huge argument with the coalition leaders just within few hours of wining the election even before announcement of the final result.
Should Nasheed genuinely wanted to maintained the coalition, it could have been possible and would have been very good for the country since there were large of highly educated people in the coalition and Nasheed should have utilized those human resources instead of shooting at them.
23rd Dec, gethering was the biggest in the history of Maldives and not this one.
The ground area of this place is much smaller compared with the 23rd get herring at Raalhugandu and check the photos from there too.
Small parties without actual members need to form coalitions to convince themselves of their existence.
Nasheed is right. A coalition Government would be very inefficient. We have experienced that since 7 February 2012. Four months before elections there is no understanding on the form of coalition let alone producing policies and a manifesto!
Kuribee needs a reality check. The size of the crowd at the MDP meeting is the only reason PPM is talking about a coalition.
So who do u think u r kidding?
1. 23rd December gathering was NOT a single party gathering. It was a farce. It was a fluke! It was a distortion of the truth by installing fear in the minds of god fearing people, by way of using religion as the most effective tool for political gain.
2. The gathering mdp had at raalhugandu immediately after the coup was much bigger than the 23 rd December gathering.
3. 8th feb peaceful protest held by mdp was a larger gathering than 23rd dec gathering
....should I point out some more ? I don't think there's any grey matter in ur thick skull contained pea brain!
You sound desperate now.
Never before in Maldivian history has the path to righteousness been so clearly laid out for us. The elections this september will set the Maldives' future for generations to come. It is going to tell us what Maldivians are going to choose: our doom or prosperity and freedom.
Please think about your future, and not your religion, when you're voting.
Say no to tyranny. Vote MDP.
This is a decision that was made before the forced removal of President Nasheed. Nobody is fooled by " we have to reconsider our options after the MDP Rally". That was the deal that was made. Do we really believe that Dr waheed would have setlled for less? All working to plan. Dr Waheed is the chosen candidate of the wealthy and powerful in the Maldives.PPM knows Yaameen cannot be sold to the people any more. That is why we had Mr Joker Umar Naseer in place running against Yaameen. Who in their sane minds would choose Umar Naseer as a Presidential candidate?
"Forming a coalition among trust worthy people with a sharp leader will be good".
Fluent English , sharp as.
Please do us a favour and continue writing like this. Nobody buys your broken English I am a simple citizen with a hang up over Nasheed act. You are very much a part of the campaign for Dr waheed machinery.
So the 90% is worried about the power of the 10% now?
Once upon a time, a coalition of drug cartels, drug traffickers, gangsters, thieves and child abusers gathered into a loose coalition 'in the name of islam' and ganged up on the people of Maldives.
The people of Maldives have banded together with the MDP. The 'coalition' gang bosses are scared. Very, very scared.
Oh, so now the pink ladies are in shock and awe of MDP?
Here's what's going to happen now. The "dear leader" will now pretend to be the Father of Coalitions and will start knocking on the doors of anyone who'd invite him in. Mark my words, this guy will stoop down to any level, to get that taste of power again.
Of course, once power is in his or his brother's hands, those coalition partners will be as useful as Umar Naseer ever was (i.e. a used condom, if you'll pardon my French).
Anyone who enters into a "coalition" with PPM deserves what they get. Don't say I didn't warn you.
Anni is right. Too many cooks spoil the soup. Let the Maldivian people vote for the party with the best manifesto for the country. What is with these pro- govt parties? Campaign and ask the people for their votes, istead of thinking of more creative ways of knocking down anni and the mdp. The majority of the people love anni and depise what was done to him on Feb 7th and 8th last year.That's the reality. Other politicians have to live with that.
Wonder if Anni has considered the implications of getting deleted by the military. The fallout could turn this country into another Syria. PLay safe. Now is not the time to be the hero.
"Forming a coalition among trust worthy people with a sharp leader will be good."
Man! What is desperation?
Finally an impressive and rather accurate analysis. Some of the comments here are not intended to convey an honest thought or understanding. They all seek to influence the viewpoints of readers, possibly by distorting, accentuating or exaggerating facts even. Even hiding and covering up real data also. The 'Minivannews' mantra is also this- under the auspices of a very high pay their journalists are also involved in gross-spin coverage. No matter still, such is the nature of this world. I find it hilarious that someone here has even mentioned 'righteousness'.
@ matter of fact
"The majority of the people love anni and depise what was done to him on Feb 7th and 8th last year". I beg to differ, very clever though. No, the MDP despises what 'was done' to Anni. The rest of the country hasn't yet signed up to MDP okies. We can only know after an electoral count whether the rest of us despise what was done to Anni and MDP. CheerS.
The idealogy promoted and advocated by MDP is great. The problem is Nasheed. When he comes to power he forgets what he preaches and acts in the opposite.
My heart says vote for MDP but my head says no to Nasheed. What a dilemaa!
point taken. Yes. If there is an election. You people know everything. And everybody...
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