Commissioner of Police Abdulla Riyaz dismissed as “excuses” the allegations by EC Chair Fuwad Thowfeek that police had blocked the re-scheduled presidential election on October 19, contending that the commission “was not properly prepared.”
Police have arrested five men for allegedly obstruction police while they were trying to open to the roads closed by Maldivian Democratic Party in protest over the cancellation of presidential elections by police on Saturday.
Elections Commission President Fuwad Thowfeek has criticized the Supreme Court, the government, the police, Progressive Party of the Maldives (PPM) and the Jumhooree Party (JP) over the annulment of the first round of presidential elections held on September 7, the Supreme Court’s 16 guidelines for a revote and halt of the elections hours before polls were to open on Saturday morning.
President Mohamed Waheed raised the prospect of resignation himself in an interview yesterday with The Hindu, stating that while it was not in the interest of the country “to have an election forced on it”, he had no interest in remaining in power beyond November 11.
Elections Commissioner Fuwad Thowfeek has remained resolute as plaudits and critics alike take to social media to comment on his role in attempts to hold the presidential election. “I will not bow down and go home. Because I do not see it as a solution to the problem. I will renew my hopes. I will give my maximum strength until an election is decided. People are hungry for elections,” he said.
“I assure you, we will not step back. They can beat us. They can arrest us, but this ideology cannot be erased. We will establish good governance in the Maldives,” the former president told Maldivian Democratic Party supporters as they continued to occupy the main road of the capital Male’.
With just hours to go before polls are scheduled to open and with the voter lists still unsigned by two of the three candidates, the Elections Commission has held a press conference to declare that voting will proceed as planned.
After refusing to sign the amended voter registry for tomorrow’s re-scheduled presidential election, two of the three parties fielding candidates have filed requests with the Supreme Court asking that the election be prevented should they not sign the new lists.
The Jumhooree Party has joined the Progressive Party of the Maldives in refusing to approve the presidential election’s voter registry, narrowing the chances for elections to proceed as planned tomorrow (October 19). The party has said it will need two days to check the list.