Yameen inaugurated as President

Additional reporting by Zaheena Rasheed

Abdulla Yameen has been inaugurated the sixth President of the Maldives at a People’s Majlis Sitting today, bringing to a close months of political uncertainty over delayed, annulled and obstructed presidential polls.

Chief Justice Ahmed Faiz administered the presidential oath in the presence of People’s Majlis Speaker Abdulla Shahid during a red carpet ceremony held at 1:00 pm at Dharubaaruge.

After Yameen took the oath of office, the army fired a 21-gun salute. The ceremony was attended by Former Presidents Maumoon Abdul Gayoom and Mohamed Nasheed who sat side by side, Members of Parliament, judges, high ranking police and military officers, foreign ambassadors and state dignitaries.

Addressing the nation, Yameen said the Maldives was in an economically vulnerable position due to sky high debt, extremely high budget spending and pledged to reduce state expenditure.

“Today the Maldives is in a deep economic pit, in an economically vulnerable position. State debt is sky high. The state budget’s expenses are extremely high. Hence, we have to prioritize reducing state expenditure. I will start work very soon to reduce state budget expenditure,” he said.

He vowed to increase revenue for fishermen and farmers, expand job opportunities for youth, improve social protection mechanisms, eradicate drug abuse, provide the opportunity for women to work from home, increase the role of youth and women in the public sector, and strengthen the education system with a particular emphasis on good behavior and respect for Islam.

Claiming his government will be “one of results,” Yameen said he would protect the country’s assets including the airport – the “the main economic door of the country.”

Yameen’s administration will “uphold Maldives’ honor with international organizations,” strengthen relationships with neighboring countries and Arab Muslim countries, he said.

He appealed to the People’s Majlis, state institutions, NGOs and industrial workers to help him realize his vision for the Maldives.

“I take over the presidency of the Maldives today with a vision of tomorrow and new dreams, heralding new thoughts, giving new hopes to the people,” he added.

Yameen, the half-brother of former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom who ruled the Maldives for 30 years, narrowly won yesterday’s run-off vote against President Mohamed Nasheed with 51.39 percent of the vote.

Yameen received 29.72 percent (61,278 votes) in the first round on November 9, compared to Nasheed’s 46.93 percent of votes (96,764).

However by refusing to sign the voter lists for the run-off scheduled for November 10 – a position backed by a Supreme Court ruling hours before polls opened – he gained time necessary to convince third-placed candidate Gasim Ibrahim to support him.

The resort tycoon initially remained neutral, briefly flirted with Nasheed’s Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP), but finally on Wednesday urged his 48,131 first round supporters to back the PPM, awarding Yameen a narrow coalition victory over the MDP.

Total voter turnout was 91.41 percent (218,621), the highest since 2008, up five percent from 208,504 (86 percent) in the first round – suggesting the coalition was also successful in persuading many recalcitrant voters to head to the polls.

Following his win, Yameen said he would draw half the Presidential salary and would prefer to live in his own home in Male, security permitting.

“God willing, just the way I have promised, I will not say no to the pledges I made. So my salary will start, just as I’ve said, from half the salary,” Yameen declared.

He speculated that it would take two years to return the country to a surplus.

Regarding his pledge to reduce the number of political appointees, he noted that “we still plan to reduce political posts. But along with that, when we have so many parties with us, we will try to do whatever we can to make sure they participate. But even with that, our main plan has not changed,” he said.

The Indian government extended “hearty congratulations” to President Yameen “and the people of Maldives for the successful conclusion of the Presidential elections process in a peaceful manner.”

“The high voter turn-out in every round of Presidential elections is indicative of the strong desire and determination of the people of Maldives to participate wholeheartedly in the process of choosing their President,” read a statement.

“We welcome the acceptance of the verdict of the people of Maldives by all sides and commitment expressed to take the country forward on the path of stability, progress and development.”


31 thoughts on “Yameen inaugurated as President”

  1. good report by JJ.
    I request him to truthfully report news about maldives to reuters without any bias towards his employer.

  2. Yameen is only the candidate who can really turn this country into a major trade hub in among SAARC countries

    He has the right vision and people to drive his ecumenic agenda unlike Nasheed.

  3. @ainth haha "bias towards his employer", Mr jj, Ms leah and the superfriends should head back to wherever they came from and leave this country alone

  4. Good that Minivannews is still up and running

    Next we hope JJ will not put politically motivated stories to AFP and others. The country does not deserve a bad image that worries international lenders.

    Such False reporting by a few like JJ is also turning the country unnecessarily into nationalism
    Most islanders fear Brish Colonisatiin . Think about it JJ

  5. JJ might have been biased , but thats what democracy is all about, choosing and supporting. Every newspaper in the world is biased, from the Washington Post to Daily mail.

    However JJ did not use bias when reporting about the antics of the Supreme court or the police. They actually happened. Bias in newspapers is expected and excusable.

    Bias by the Judiciary and Police is a travesty.
    A President outstaying his presidency is a travesty.
    The refusing to sign voter lists biased and a travesty.

    All the delay was in the grand plan of the PPM to 'win' the election and only by getting Gasim to change his allegiance at the last possible moment and even then....
    Yameen only scraped in by 6000 votes.

    Hardly a victory.

  6. @Hero agree with you, Yameen can turn this country into a major drug trade hub among SAARC and why not beyond?

  7. Although I wanted Nasheed to get re-elected,I think this is the best outcome for the country and MDP at this point in time.
    Now let's hope Yameen and MDP are sincere and continue to behave like mature politicians.
    Although I suspect it will not take much to upset the likes of Gasim and Umar.

  8. @ Truth
    "Most islanders fear British Colonization"

    No offense, but I believe you'll be better off as a British Colony. However, it's highly unlikely that such a policy even exist.

  9. Since its inception in its current form, Minivan has done a wonderful job of defending the Nasheed administration and presenting its initiatives in a favorable light.

    In the Waheed administration, as an opposition-aligned publication Minivan carried out its work by bringing thought-provoking contrusctive criticism along with the propaganda expected of any media outlet.

    I hope Minivan will continue in this regard and flex its journalistic muscle to offer what is missing for a few of us who like articles that are a bit deeper than "he said this" or "she said that" or "that paid stooge believes his employer is the best thing to happen since chocolate ice cream".

    I have never been a fan of making excuses for people in power so I will look forward to Minivan's reporting in the future.

  10. Here in Maldives you can find dumbos. like Damn...JJ you are the best....at least I could read good English in here...

  11. "He vowed to increase revenue for fishermen and f"armers, expand job opportunities for youth, improve social protection mechanisms, eradicate drug abuse, provide the opportunity for women to work from home, increase the role of youth and women in the public sector, and strengthen the education system with a particular emphasis on good behavior and respect for Islam"

    And what a about the torture victims in the Maldives????????????

    And what about the corruption iin the police and courts....

    And what about the gangs....

    Mr. JJ ????????

  12. Minivan and the white/coconut entourage of Anni, still don't get it. Let me summarise where you screwed up.

    1. Anni got carried away by all the attention of being a global eco-warrior. He spent more than 50% of his time away from Male in 2009-2012.

    2. Anni therefore neglected the local politics and got completely over-confident. In an act of arrogance, he arrested Chief Justice Abdulla. Until this point, the justice system was held in high regard in the Maldives, and no wonder the people took to the streets. Not a coup, simply a popular uprising (of course with Gayoom support). This is what happens when you don't focus on what you were elected for - to run the Maldives.

    3. The activist in Anni never left him - he even organised a protest in Male when he was the President!

    4. The white/coconuts grew in power which brew resentment among Anni's close political colleagues. Strategic mistake of appointing a former Christian priest as the Maldivian 'Ambassador' in the middle of nowhere in the UK, epitomised this 'bubble thinking'.

    5. Anni smoking a joint or having a glass of alcohol (nothing wrong with that) was too well known in Male. Something, unfortunately, you have to give up if you are going to be President of a Islamic country.

    6. Anni overplayed the Indian angle - even hiding in the Indian embassy for a while. Yes - the GMR was a massive fiasco, courtesy of Waheed, but the current Indian government is spineless. Anni thought that India will coerce Waheed and others and India will ensure Anni's election as President, but, that was wishful thinking.

    Maldives needs foreigners, but, only as tourists. We don't need any Neo-colonial thinking of the sort that Minivan promotes. As Anni is a keen reader of this column, I hope he learns from the above. Ditch the white/coconut advisers - get some real, grounded educated Maldivians and rebuild. You will have your chance again.

  13. Meanwhile, Maldivians fighting in Syria



    The page claims to release more in the coming few months.

  14. Now that was the easy part done. Now comes the real work, that is, the job of running a country. As Yameen will soon find out it is far harder than being in opposition and trying to scupper an incumbent government. Every single waking day, Yameen has to be reminded of the promises he made to people.

    The bridges connecting the Male region, the oil exploration, university education for all school leavers who pass a certain number of subjects, affordable health care for all, maintaining the value of the Rufiyaa, reducing living costs and a whole lot of other things. Every week and every month, Maldivians will be looking at that list and asking how much of that Yameen delivered.

    "Dheen" and "Qawm" means nothing if those things cannot be delivered. Otherwise, we might as well build the biggest mosque we can build, fly the largest flag we can make and sit inside. That'd be the end of the quest for "Dheen" and "Qawm".

    As for foreign policy, would Dhunya carry out her father's wishes and leave the Commonwealth? Would she tell foreign dignitaries to mind their own business and not to interfere with our little cosy country?

  15. Maldive Islands and its people, including its leaders, have yet another chance to prove that they have a proud history and a bright future as a modern democracy.

    Minivannews is not important. But we the Maldivians are.

  16. Some extremists did not participate in the pole in the first round saying that voting is not allowed or haraam. These extremists never participate in any election because it is haraam for them. However Nasheed and Yameen competed in second round, same Islamic extremists decided to vote becouse they don't want Nasheed to win, saying that it is responsibility for them to vote against Nasheed because they are against Democracy. They said that they voted not for Yameen but against democracy.

  17. Congrats to the PPM Legent who has successfully elected with close result.
    Do the best leave the rest
    Kamdar group

  18. Keep on being reminded by the feeling of a Leonard Cohen song...

    "Everybody knows that the dice are loaded
    Everybody rolls with their fingers crossed
    Everybody knows that the war is over
    Everybody knows the good guys lost
    Everybody knows the fight was fixed
    The poor stay poor, the rich get rich
    That's how it goes
    Everybody knows
    Everybody knows that the boat is leaking
    Everybody knows that the captain lied
    Everybody got this broken feeling
    Like their father or their dog just died"

  19. If Yameen wants the stability in the country first things he should do is abolish Islamic ministry. You don’t need Islamic ministry in a Muslim country secondly ban Islamic studies outside school curriculum. and ban preaching of Islam, instead encourage dialogue with these Mullahs in Figuhu academy and try to rehabilitate them to correct their radicalization .

  20. @circus says '..but I believe you’ll be better off as a British Colony'

    This kind of thoughts are in the collective subconscious of MDP and this is why there is a nationalistic turn in the election

    White/coconuts is an excellent metaphor

  21. Hero what a fantastic idea,a trade hub in SAARC.Heehee varubali vehje sahaadhai.Moya aalaathun ves ulhey dho?

  22. I would like to see some neutrality in the paper during the new presidents reign. In an Al Jazeera documentary a few years ago a high level representative of the paper stated that this paper would not always be biased in favour of the MDP, but it is evident that this paper is very biased in favour of the MDP.

  23. @Hero. I don't know where you get information about Yameen turning this country into a trade hub (..my, that's a big word). What we, the people, know is his pledges aren't realistic. He didn't show how he would do it through a written manifesto. So we are in a state of uncertainty as to what we will see during this next 5 years.

  24. He swore by God. I pray that he is bound by his oath and that he grows a conscious, realizes that this nation is not his and his family's alone, that he is now responsible for every issue big or small that we face. May he never rest until he fulfills his promise to God. May he be cursed with the desire to fulfill his promises to uphold and protect the law, the constitution, Islam and the rights of the citizens of Maldives.

  25. Yameen is a jack*** but it is more disturbing to see so many people support him. Not even the supporters would believe that 51% really voted for Y. He and his crew are too crooked to run for an election without cheating their way for at least 50,000 votes. Morons. His or rather his brother's only aim is to bleed you all dry.

  26. Pink team supporters, please don't assume this was a win. Winning by 50% with underhand play, payoffs and outright threats of military and a super powered court should make you dig a hole in the ground and hide your head in the sand for shame. Take off the blinds from your eyes and hearts. How do you call yourselves muslims and be of such low ethical and moral fiber?

  27. That was no victory. That was premeditated murder of democracy. And the peeping-tom WORLD...has jerked off and is comfortably sitting back again. Sad state of affairs. Sad world we live in!


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