Dr Didi sole candidate for JP presidency

The Jumhoree Party (JP) have announced that Dr Ibrahim Didi is the only candidate running for its newly-created position of party President, reports Haveeru.

Dr Didi joined the party earlier this month following his removal as President of the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) at the end of April.

Didi, alongside Alhan Fahmy, the MDP’s Vice President, was removed from his position after 95 percent of the party’s National Council voted in support of no-confidence motions against the pair.

Shortly before the pair switched parties it had been rumoured that Didi and Fahmy would insist on retaining their previous titles, requiring an amendment to the JP’s regulations.

The party has also been taking applications for the posts of Vice President, Secretary General, and Policy Secretary, reported Haveeru, although it did not list Alham Fahmy amongst the applicants for the Vice Presidency.

Hassan Shah, another recent arrival from the MDP, where he served as Secretary General, was said to have applied for the same position with the JP.


Civil Court postpones MDP Raalhugandu trial until further notice from High Court

The Civil Court has decided to postpone the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP)’s suit against police until further notice from the High Court, following the dismantling of the party’s protest campsite at ‘Raalhugandu’ on March 19.

The Civil Court’s decision followed a court order from High Court to postpone the trial until the Court had concluded a case lodged by the state challenging the legitimacy of MDP former President Dr Ibrahim Didi, according to local media outlets.

The State Attorney’s issue was that Dr Didi, who signed the form to file the case in the Civil Court, was elected as the president in accordance to an amended version of the MDP Charter which was not submitted to the Elections Commission (EC). That, the state contended, made the appointment illegitimate and Dr Didi ineligible to present the case to the court on behalf of MDP. As such, the state requested the trial be discontinued.

However, the Civil Court’s presiding judge decided that the laws did not state that the amended articles of the charter would be void if not presented to the Elections Commission, and decided to continue the trial.

The Attorney General (AG)’s Office then appealed the Civil Court’s decision to continue the trial. The High Court ordered the Civil Court to postpone the trial until it reached a conclusion.

A similar issue was raised by the State Attorney at the beginning of the trial of the case in which MDP Acting Chairperson and MP ‘Reeko’ Moosa Manik signed the form to file the case in the Civil Court. The state at the time contended that Acting Chairpersons did not have the authority to file cases in court on behalf of MDP according to the MDP charter, and requested the court discontinue the trial.

The Civil Court then threw the case out of court. Then-President Dr Didi signed the form and resubmitted it to the Civil Court.

The MDP protest campsite at the ‘Raalhugandu’ area inside the Antenna Park, was granted to MDP by Male’ City Council, which  has a substantial MDP majority. The camp was dismantled by the police and military hours after President Dr Waheed Hassan Manik delivered his presidential address to parliament on March 19.

Many MDP supporters who had come to Male’ from the islands after the controversial transfer of power on February 7 had camped in the area.


Opposition Parliamentary Group to reject appointment of ministers Didi and Tholhath

The opposition parliamentary group has announced that it will reject the appointment of Dr Ibrahim Didi as Fisheries Minister and Tholhath Ibrahim as Defense Minister.

Spokesperson for the group, MP Ahmed Mahlouf  of the Dhivehi Rayyithunge Party (DRP)’s Z-faction, has confirmed the decision.

DRP MP Abdulla Mausoon said the faction of the party loyal to leader Ahmed Thasmeen Ali had decided to accept Tholhath but reject Dr Didi.

“Our parliamentary group found that it does not make much sense appointing someone who has been already dismissed by us,” Dr Mausoom said. “Our leader MP Ahmed Thasmeen Ali met with the press when they both were appointed by the President and revealed our stand.”

Dr Mausoom insisted that the same procedure had to be applied for everyone, recalling that when President Mohamed Nasheed reappointed Dr Ahmed Ali Sawad as the Attorney General after the parliament rejected him once, he was rejected a second time.

DRP MP Ahmed Mahlouf and DRP MP Ahmed Nihan did not respond to Minivan News at time of press.

Dr Didi is currently the President of the ruling Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP), but was reappointed as Fisheries Minister by President Nasheed on July 19.

Dr Didi resigned from his position as the Fisheries Minister along with the other cabinet members in protest to the opposition parliamentarians alleged obstruction of executive power in June last year. His subsequent reappointment was dismissed by the opposition-majority parliament, along with seven other ministers.


No issues inside MDP leadership, says Dr Didi

Ruling Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) Leader Dr Ibrahim Didi has dismissed speculation that there were internal issues within the party, following a decision by the the party’s national council to appoint ‘Reeko’ Moosa Manik as the acting Chairperson for one year.

Local media reported that Dr Didi had expressed concern that the appointment was inconsistent with the party’s charter.

The MDP’s website today quoted Dr Didi as saying that having different thoughts on a subject was not an issue, and it had been the MDP that introduced freedom of expression to the Maldives.

‘’The MDP is a party that knows how to tolerate different opinions and a party that knows how to work together even with different opinions,’’ Dr Didi said. ‘’We are in the spirit to work together, hopefully we will solve any problems we face.’’

He also thanked Moosa for accepting the position of acting Chairperson.

Speaking to different media outlets Dr Didi said that the party’s charter stated that if the post of chairperson becomes vacant, the post will temporarily be handed over to deputy chairperson.

He also told the media that he would seek legal advice over the matter and that it was questionable whether the national council could make such a decision when the charter stated otherwise.

‘’There are no issues between me and Dr Didi, the National Council and me or the National Council between Dr Didi,’’ said MDP acting Chairperson and former Parliamentary Group’s Leader and MP ‘Reeko’ Moosa Manik.

Moosa said that as the MDP was a democratic party its members were free to express their own opinions, and offered assurances that the MDP would never become factionalised.

The MDP was not a party that focused around one single person, he added.

The MDP has meanwhile announced interested candidates to send letters to the party’s secretariat, following the resignation of Moosa from his former post as Parliamentary Group Leader.


New MDP President summons political appointees “to make government accountable”

Newly-elected Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) President and former Fisheries Minister Dr Ibrahim Didi has said that he will summon political figures in the current government and question them regarding the fulfilling of the pledges made by the party.

“Those in political positions received those positions from the party. I am legally obliged, and it is also my responsibility, to query them,’’ Dr Didi said, speaking to the people of Thoddu in North Ari Atoll. The island is the constituency of opposition Dhivehi Rayyithunge Party (DRP) Deputy Leader, MP Ali Waheed.

Dr Didi said he will summon senior officials from the Works Corporation to determine whether solutions for Thoddu’s sewerage system of Thoddu had been found, and also said he would summon officials from the Education Ministry to discuss the challenges to improving the education system in Thoddu.

New Deputy Leader of MDP and MP Alhan Fahmy, MP Ilyas Labeeb, MDP Thoddu branch president Hassan Shiyan and Thoddu Council member Ali Naseer spoke at the rally held in Thoddu.

Speaking at the rally, Alhan criticised the oppositio, saying that the biggest challenge for today was that there is no responsible opposition party in the Maldives.

‘’The future of this nation lies in the hands of youths. Ali Waheed is also a person who needs political progression. He can make progress in politics by joining MDP,’’ said Alhan, urging Ali Waheed to join MDP.

Rumors are currently circulating in the Maldivian press that Waheed has already joined the MDP, and that the party was planning to hold a special ceremony to celebrate it, however Waheed was unavailable for comment at time of press.

MDP Secretary General Ahmed Shah said he had no information that Waheed had joined MDP.

”Lately everyone on the MDP podium has been calling on Waheed to join the MDP,” said Shah. ”It may happen – I think that is the reason why everyone is speaking about it and rumors are being spread.”


MDP announces preliminary election results

The Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) has announced the preliminary results of its elections held to appoint the President, Deputy President and other special posts of the party, after vote counting was formally completed.

Former Fisheries Minister Dr Ibrahim Didi successfully challenged acting President of the party Ibrahim Hussein Zaki and won the top post of the party, with 10600 votes against Zaki’s 9519 votes.

Current Environment Minister Mohamed Aslam, former Dhivehi Rayyithunge Party (DRP) MP Alhan Fahmy and Hussein Adam ran for the Vice President’s post.

Alhan won the post by 12225 votes while Environment Minister Aslam won 7230 votes and Adam 158 votes. Both Zaki and Aslam have conceded victory to Didi and Alhan.

Shiyama Adam was elected as the leader of Women’s Wing and Khadheeja Abubakur ‘Aniyath’ was elected as the deputy leader of the Woman’s Wing.

Five members for the MDP Religious Council were also appointed in the election: Mohamed Farooq, Ibrahim Shafeeu, Ahmed Zanin Adam, Ahmed Zaki and Hussein Ibrahim. The former leader of the Religious Council resigned after claiming that he was unhappy with the party’s religious policies.

Nine members for the Appeals Committee were also appointed:  Mohamed Mahir Easa, Hassan Ahmed, Ibrahim Rasheed, Ahmed Siraj, Abdul Hameed Abdul Kareem, Mohamed Falah, Imtiyaz Fahmy, Ahmed Rasheed and Nazil Afeef.

Former Minivan News journalist Aiminath Shauna, now working in the President’s Office, was elected as the head of Youth Wing and Hamza Hassan was elected as the deputy head. Shauna won the post challenging Lufshan Shakeeb ‘Looppe’, a well-known local actor.


Alhan wins MDP Vice Presidency while Dr Ibrahim Didi in line for top post

The Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) has announced the preliminary results of the party’s elections for its President and Vice President.

The results currently show that former Fisheries Minister Dr Ibrahim Didi has won the presidency of the party with 6909 votes, in close competition with the President’s Special Envoy Ibrahim Zak (6554 votes).

Meanwhile former Dhivehi Rayyithunge Party MP Alhan Fahmy has beaten Hussein Adam and Environment Minister Mohamed Aslam for the MDP Vice-Presidency with 7709 votes. Aslam received 5421 votes while Adam received 71 votes.

Fahmy changed sides to the ruling party in early 2010 after he was brought before the DRP’s disciplinary committee for voting against its party line on a motion to dismiss then-Foreign Minister Dr Ahmed Shaheed for opening relations with Israel.

Housing Minister Aslam has congratulated Alhan for his victory, following the release of the preliminary results. 121 ballot boxes of 218 have been counted so far, with official results to be announced in three days.

Aslam has also congratulated MDP Chairperson Mariya Ahmed Didi on running a successful election.

Alhan did not respond to Minivan News at time of press.


Debate between contenders for the MDP’s top post canceled

A debate due to be televised between candidates running for the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP)’s top post has been cancelled, along with a debate between candidates for the vice-presidency.

MDP’s official website said the debate was cancelled after former Fisheries Minister Dr Ibrahim Didi, a candidate running for MDP presidency, decided to boycott the debate citing “concerning issues”.

Dr Didi sent a letter to the Chairperson of MDP and MP Mariya Ahmed Didi saying that he would not participate in the debate as he was experiencing “issues” related to the debate, according to the MDP Official website.

Debate between candidates for the vice-presidency was also cancelled after MP Alhan Fahmy decided to boycott the event, alleging undue influence.

The debate was canceled after Alhan also sent a letter to Chairperson Mariya Didi raising “issues” with the advertised debate.

Alhan wrote that he did not wish to publicly reveal his objections to the debate as disunity or discord within the party was not his intention, adding that he did not want members to lose confidence in a cabinet minister.

Last night, speaking to the media, Alhan said that he was unsure whether his opponent was unaware of the questions that might be asked during the debate, in which case he said his opponent would be sure to win.

Both Alhan and Dr Didi have not yet revealed the details of the issues concerning the debate.