Former President Mohamed Nasheed has been elected president of the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) after standing uncontested for the position.
Nasheed had taken over the leadership as acting-president of the part following the resignation of chairperson ‘Reeko’ Moosa Manik after March’s disappointing Majlis election results.
After the party won just 26 of the 85 seats in the legislature, MP Reeko resigned, urging new leaders to come forward and current leaders to follow his lead in stepping down.
Nasheed received 33,709 votes from a total of 57,203 eligible voters, while former MP Ali Waheed – a losing candidate in the March polls – secured the chairmanship, also uncontested, with 26,033 votes.
Nasheed had called for new leaders to come forward and lead the party immediately following the Majlis polls.
“I want new people to come forward to run the party. But I will not go away from the party, I will always remain in doing party work,” he added.
Senior party members, including Reeko and Parliamentary Group Leader Ibrahim ‘Ibu’ Solih, suggested that the election setbacks had been a result of internal problems as well as the use of undue influence and bribery by other groups.
The position of both president and the vice president of the party have been vacant since Dr Ibrahim Didi and VP Alhan Fahmy were removed in a no-confidence vote in April 2012.
Former MP Mohamed Shifaz was also elected yesterday as party vice president, receiving 21,052 votes
March’s elections prompted the MDP to form a three-member committee tasked with collecting suggestions and ideas from the public for reforming and restructuring the party.
The suggestions – which include clearer delineation of leadership roles, greater transparency during internal elections, and better engagement with the media – will be considered at the party’s next national council meeting later this year.