MPs Abdulla Jabir and Alhan Fahmy of the Jumhoory Party (JP) – part of the current coalition government – today publicly announced that they will vote against President Dr Mohamed Waheed Hassan in an upcoming no-confidence motion.
During a press conference, held at the People’s Majlis along with opposition Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) MPs Ibrahim Rasheed and Imthiyaz Fahmy, Jabir and Alhan told local press that they did not have confidence in the current president. The two MPs claimed they were ready to stand against him, even if the vote was to be taken tomorrow.
Jabir was among a number of MPs and senior MDP figures arrested earlier this month on suspicion of the possession of drugs and alcohol following a raid by police on the island of Hodaidhoo in Haa Dhaal Atoll.
Jabir, his wife Dhiyana Saeed – the former Minister for Gender and Human Rights under the current government – and the MDP have all alleged the arrests were politically motivated. The charges have been vehemently denied by the President’s Office, which has told media that it had no knowledge of the operation until it had been carried out by police officers.
The arrests have nonetheless been labelled as “very worrying” by a delegation from the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), which late last week claimed it was “difficult” to believe the police raid had not been politically motivated.
Speaking at today’s press conference, MP Alhan alleged that Dr Waheed was threatening MPs because his attempts to make MPs act as his puppets had not worked. He said Waheed had also threatened MPs during public speeches he had given of late.
Local newspapers meanwhile quoted MP Jabir as saying that Dr Waheed should not be kept in his position, reiterating that he did not come to power through an election.
Jabir also revealed plans to forward a no-confidence motion against Home Minister Dr Ahmed Jameel and said that he had already signed the motion.
Earlier in October MDP, filed a no-confidence motion against Home Minister but was withdrawn on November 12 without mentioning a clear reason.
At the same time, a no-confidence motion against Dr Waheed was also submitted to the parliament.
The MDP claimed that the no-confidence motion was submitted to the parliament in response to what it alleged were orders from President Waheed to attack citizens and MDP MPs, and to carry out acts of “inhumanity” on February 8.
The MDP also accused President Waheed of trying to “destroy” the sensitive economy of the nation, claiming that his handling of the economy had destroyed foreign investor confidence in the Maldives.
The motion was filed with the signatures of 26 MPs of Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) on October 10.
According to article 100 (e) of the constitution, a no confidence vote against the President can be passed with votes from two-thirds of the total numbers of MPs in parliament, which amounts to 52 votes.