Nazim to announce a running mate on Saturday

Maldives National Party (MNP) presents presidential ticket to the party’s candidate and leader, Dhangethi MP Colonel (Retired) Mohamed Nazim on May 26, 2023. (Photo/MNP)

Maldives National Party (MNP) is set to announce the party’s leader and presidential candidate Colonel (Retired) Mohamed Nazim’s running mate in the upcoming presidential elections this Saturday.

MNP said the event to announce the running mate will be held at 8:30pm on Saturday.

Nazim campaigns under a manifesto titled ‘Ujaala Zamaan’ which includes pledges ranging from changing the composition of the Judicial Service Commission (JSC), ensuring the independence of the judiciary, allocating 30 percent of the parliamentary seats to women, halting the issuance of funds to political parties from the state budget and introduction of Maldives’ digital currency.

It is speculated that Nazim will choose Thimarafushi MP Abdulla Riyaz as his running mate. MNP’s formation was spearheaded by Nazim and Riyaz after their departure from Jumhoory Party (JP).

Other candidates confirmed to contest in the presidential elections President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih on main ruling Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP)’s ticket, Jumhoory Party’s leader Qasim Ibrahim, Ilyas Labeeb on The Democrats’ ticket and Maldives Reform Movement (MRM)’s leader Faris Maumoon and former Home Minister Umar Naseer who are contesting independently.

Meanwhile, the candidacy form submitted by former president Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayyom who secured Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM)’s ticket was rejected by the Elections Commission (EC). Although the decision has been appealed to Supreme Court, Yameen has instructed coalition partner People’s National Congress (PNC) to produce their own candidate as a backup.

With PNC’s senate officially deciding to contest the election this morning, the party has opened applications for interested candidates to submit their names before 2:00pm this afternoon. The senate is scheduled to vote on a candidate at 4:00pm this evening.