Umar Naseer claims MDP influencing internal DRP politics

Former president of the Islamic Democratic Party (IDP) and candidate for the DRP vice presidency, Umar Naseer, has claimed he is being targeted by an amendment presented to the party insisting candidates seeking elections to senior positions must have been a member for at least six months.

”It must be someone related to MDP who is trying to stop me from becoming the vice president of DRP,” Umar claimed.

He said that the MDP “was afraid that if I become the vice president of the party the government might fall”, and said the ruling party was “planning many things” to stop him from becoming the DRP’s vice president.

DRP MP Ahmed Mausoom said the amendments would only be announced on the 16 and 17 of February, adding that he did not know who had presented the amendment.

DRP MP Ali Waheed, who is also contesting for the party’s vice presidency, said he had not yet gone through the amendments and could not comment on them yet. He said he gave the eight candidates running for the post of vice president his “best wishes”.

Spokesman for MDP Ahmed Haleem said that the MDP “does not consider Umar Naseer a political figure”, and added that the party was looking forward to a time when DRP “strengthens its inner democracy and leadership to become a strong opposition party.”


Umar Naseer to take EC to court over decision to retain IDP

Former president of the Islamic Democratic Party (IDP) Umar Naseer, who recently joined the Dhivehi Rayyithunge Party (DRP), has announced he intends take the Elections Commission (EC) to court over its decision not to allow the disbanding of the IDP.

Umar left the IDP last month to further his political career, claiming there was “no future” in being president of such a small party. He claimed a “the majority” of the IDP wished to disband the party altogether.

However, Deputy President of the IDP, Mohamed Hassan Manik, said the majority of the members disagreed and believed that the IDP “can still be run as a viable and independent political party.”

Umar’s decision to abandon the party, he suggested, was made “because it will be easier for him to try and become president of the Maldives [in the DRP].”

Meanwhile, the EC ruled that Naseer’s decision to disband the IDP was not valid under the party’s own regulations and that it could continue to exist as a political entity, following an investigation of what the EC’s president Fuad Thaufeeq described as “a big mess.”

“We found that the number of persons in the executive committee required to be present at a meeting to change a rule was not satisfied,” he said. “This is according to their rules.”

According to Thaufeeq, the decision to dissolve the party was taken at a meeting where less than the required 50 per cent of the executive committee were present.

“We looked at the minutes and percentage attendances at the meetings and found this regulation was not strictly followed, and is why we do not conisder Umar Naseer’s decision to dissolve the party to be valid.”

Thaufeeq said it was Naseer’s right to take the matter to court, and acknowledged that while this would be very expensive for the independent commission, “we don’t have any option.”

“There are two groups within IDP. One is with Umar Naseer, the other is against him,” Thaufeeq said. “I have no clue how this will be resolved without going to court, because regardless of our decision either group will take us to court.”

Naseer had not responded to Minivan News’ request for comment at time of press.


IDP ‘has no future’ says Umar, jumping to DRP

President of the Islamic Democractic Party (IDP) Umar Naseer today said there was “no future” in a political career as president of such a small party.

Umar also announced he was joining the Dhivehi Rayyithunge Party (DRP) to further his political career, and claimed “the majority” of the IDP  now wished to disband the party altogether.

Umar was welcomed to the DRP by former president Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, during a special ceremony held on Sunday. Gayoom described Umar as an “outstanding politician”, and said it was significant that the president of another political party had elected to join the DRP.

Umar did not reveal whether he planned to contest the leadership of DRP. Candidates are required to nominate themselves for the elections by the end of January.

IDP collapse

The impact of Umar’s departure on the IDP is unclear. While the departing president said he was disbanding it, “a minority in the party are resisting and working to keep the IDP running as a political party,” he said.

At the ceremony, Gayoom said it was a great achievement for DRP for getting an outstanding politician like Umar and it is more special when a person who used to be the president of a different party joins DRP.

During a ‘aadhaya hilaafu’ congress of IDP members, Umar said the party’s members had consented to dissolve the party.

However IDP’s Vice President Mohamed Hassan Manik said  Umar “had no right” to disband the party because the majority of the party “do not want to do it,” and that it was illegal for him to do so.

”Maybe the majority of Alarms Pvt Ltd and the Whale Submarine [companies owned by Umar] want to dissolve the party, but none of IDP members want to,” Hassan said.

He furthermore condemned Umar for being “hungry for power.”

“That’s what he wants. We are very disappointed that a person trying to run for the administration of a country hesitates to follow the law,” Hassan said.

Hassan said the DRP were welcome to Umar “because the party needs someone who is willing to go out to the streets and protest to defend the DRP.”

”Umar is perfect for that,” Hassan said.

President of Elections Commission Fuad Thaufeeq described the whole case as ”a big mess and very unclear”.

Fuad said that nothing that Hassan and Umar said had anything in common, and that the Elections Commission was now gathering all of the IDP’s documents to try and decide whether Umar was technically able to disband the party.

Conflict at the IDP

The IDP was founded in December 2005 by Umar Naseer, Mohamed Haneef, Ahmed Inaz, Mohamed Ibrahim Didi, Abdulla Waheed and Mahamed Hassan Manik.

During the 2008 presidential election Umar, as a presidential candidate, garnered 1.39 per cent of the country’s votes (2472). The party received 214 votes during the elections to the Maldivian Assembly on 9 May 2009.