Presidential polls set for November 9

The Elections Commission (EC) has set the first round of presidential elections for November 9, after the police forcibly brought a Supreme Court-ordered revote to a halt on October 19.

“We have decided to hold the first round of presidential elections on November 9, and if necessary, a second round on November 16,” Elections Commission President Fuwad Thowfeek said.

The Supreme Court annulled the first round of presidential polls held on September citing electoral fraud despite unanimous domestic and international praise over a free and fair vote. The apex court delineated 16 guidelines to hold a revote by October 20.

According to the guidelines, the EC must obtain signatures from all candidates on the voter registry. However, the Progressive Party of the Maldives (PPM) and Jumhooree Party (JP) refused to approve the lists and police stopped the election an hour before polling was to begin. The move has prompted widespread international concern and Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) protests.

Thowfeek said the EC had held meetings with the President, the cabinet and political parties on the earliest possible date for a new election.

“We have said, when we get to a certain point, when a certain party doesn’t do what they must do, it should not affect the entire election. If that is the case, we will never be able to hold an election,” Thowfeek said.

“They assured us they will not allow for these kind of obstructions in the upcoming election. Ministers have given us commitment that they will find a solution and facilitate this. That is why we have started work again. If the same thing happened as before, this is not something we must do. We are starting work again because we are confident there will be an election. I am certain we will succeed this time,” he added.

During the various meetings, the government had said it would provide facilities to verify fingerprints re-registration forms – one of JP and PPM’s conditions for approving the voter registry. The EC has said the commission does not have the capacity to do so.

The EC will continue to follow the Supreme Court’s guidelines, but will seek to change them in the future, Thowfeek said. In a previous interview on Television Maldives (TVM), he described the guidelines as “restrictions.”

“I hope the government considers these restrictions in the future and finds a solution. Otherwise, holding elections will become impossible and that affects the most fundamental [right] in a democracy.”

After technical information regarding the EC’s database was shared with the Supreme Court during the vote annulment hearing, Thowfeek said the EC’s server had been compromised with external actors accessing the database and changing data. However, he believes the security glitches will be fixed before the upcoming election.

“We are working with the NCIT [National Center for Information Technology]. They have not given us a report yet. They are working non-stop. We are certain when the election comes, we will be able to block everyone out of our system and they will no longer have access to our data. We are proceeding with the assurance given to us by technical people,” Thowfeek said.

The EC said within the next three weeks, it would allow registration for new eligible voters, and re-registration for voters who will be voting in a different location other than their home island. However, voters who re-registered for October 19 will not need to submit re-registration forms again.

President Dr Mohamed Waheed Hassan has said he does not wish to stay on as President even one day beyond the end of the presidential term on November 11. If no candidate wins over 50 percent in the first round of polls and a second round needs to be held, interim arrangements will have to be made. The Supreme Court has previously said Waheed’s government would continue until a new president is elected.

The JP and PPM have pledged their support to Waheed staying on, but former President and Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) presidential candidate Mohamed Nasheed has called for Waheed to resign, allowing a transitional government under the Speaker of Parliament to oversee elections.


9 thoughts on “Presidential polls set for November 9”

  1. The moving of the goal posts and the corruption to keep Nasheed out, round 3 !


    Give a Like to this page people! 🙂

  3. Maldives needs to be ready for democracy first.
    It is not yet ready.
    Elections should come next.

  4. "They assured us they will not allow for these kind of obstructions in the upcoming election."

    (1) I am curious to know how they are going to do that.

    (2) The only conclusion you can draw from this is that all the previous obstructions took place with the full authority and collusion of the regime with those political parties. Of course, we know this, but it's good to have confirmation from the horse's mouth.

    (3) There is also something else which is again very dangerous that this proves. Gasim and Yameen have proved that there can be no election in this country but on their terms and at a time they want.

    (4) Nazim is keeping a thin veneer of "distance", but in reality the EC is now being dictated to by the regime. EC has been set "guidelines" which are outside the mandate given to the EC by the Constitution. EC has been fed a timeline that the regime and its supporters wanted in the first place.

    (5) Whilst Nazim corrals the EC on the one hand, PPM and JP axis have formed a group especially designed to terrorise the EC. Is this legal too? How do you categorise the threatening, intimidation and defaming of an independent institution? Oh yeah, it's for the "love of Islam"!

  5. Gasim and yameen have got what they wanted. A few days when they can rev their engines up, and spread hate towards Anni. You can bet heavily, that everything evil under the sun will start rolling against Anni. By the time they are done, Anni will painted to look like Hitler. But we know better. Corrupt b******s!

  6. So my questions.... 9th will be the first round.

    And 16th for the second round on an "IF" basis means the the current BMW will step down on 11th. (a 7 days ping term in between)

    I have fears.. these 7 days without a head of state given access to all kinds of changes within the ruling body.

    It feels as if this is still going according to Yamin and Gasim's game..They have repeatedly said they will not let anni sit as president even if elected.

    If a 2nd round is required, my fears are 100% true. from 9th - 11th, we need to make sure there is an agreement on how the temporary govt will be handle the polls. This is building up a disaster in the making.. if govt is playing this game, then it will be over my dead body. it will be the first massacre in Maldivian history. The armed forces, mutinying police need to understand will be a no mercy fight. We fought for our freedom from Portuguese Malabars, it will be an honor to meet face to face with mutinying police.

  7. Hear ye, I am The Supreme.

    @not ready "Maldives needs to be ready for democracy first. It is not yet ready. Elections should come next."

    At the cusp of change, at the critical juncture in history, a light shines just in front of you. Democracy supporters only need to reach out and grab the light. Move forward, go forward!

    Hear ye, I am The Supreme.

  8. So another first round next month. And if a person you don't like wins it once again, you can go back to jokers at Supreme Court to get it annulled once again and have another "first round" next month. Are we staring at an endless loop here? After all, how long will international pressure sustain - some body's gotta give.

  9. Oh dear, here we go again.....its like sitting in an aircraft for ages and after taxiing to the end of the runway the pilot announces.....''ladies and gentleman, due to unforseen circumstances, we are going back to the gate''.
    Makes me wonder if you primitive people really appreciate the concept of democrative elections.
    Why don't you 'true believers' establish an Islamic caliphate and impose full sharia your brothers in Brunei?
    Democracy is far too sophisticated for you.


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