Muizzu officially endorsed by Yameen, whole PPM-PNC leadership

Opposition PPM-PNC coalition's leadership's press conference on August 8, 2023.

The opposition coalition composed of Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) and People’s National Congress (PNC) has announced the support of the coalition’s whole leadership to PNC’s presidential candidate, Male’ City Mayor Dr. Mohamed Muizzu.

All members of the leadership participated in the press conference held by the opposition coalition today alongside Muizzu.

Speaking at the press conference, Muizzu said there are no disagreements within the leadership regarding the presidential elections. PNC’s leader Abdul Raheem Abdulla, who also serves as the acting leader of the coalition, also announced their imprisoned leader, former president Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayyoom’s full support to Muizzu.

“Our front is united. Our leadership is together,” Muizzu said.

Till Tuesday night’s press conference – some top officials from PPM stayed silent on endorsing Muizzu. This led to rumors that alleged some of the top officials from the opposition coalition were refusing to back Muizzu, which was further exacerbated when some of the leadership members, did not mention the presidential election at all, when speaking during a rally held at the height of these rumors. Moreover, some members had also talked against the decision of the senate and the leadership on the election.

However, all leadership members, in Tuesday night’s press conference, expressed support for Muizzu.

“We have no problems here. Our PPM-PNC, especially the whole leadership, is ready to election the pair comprising of Dr. Muizzu and our friend, Hussain Mohamed Latheef,” Mahibadhoo MP Ahmed Thoriq (Tom) said the press conference.

Naifaru MP Ahmed Shiyam, Maduvvari MP Adam Shareef Umar and Hulhumale’ constituency councilor in Male’ City Council Ibrahim Shujau also separately expressed support for Muizzu.

The turmoil inside the opposition coalition was prompted after Yameen sent a note, instructing the PPM-PNC leadership to consider boycotting the election, following his unsuccessful attempt to have Elections Commission (EC)’s decision to reject his candidacy revoked.

However, the leadership convened for an emergency meeting to discuss the instruction, and decided to put the matter to the vote of the joint senate.

The senate decided against boycotting the election with a vote of 67-45.

On Sunday night, Yameen communicated through his spouse, Fathimath Ibrahim that the opposition leader did not accept the senate’s decision.

Muizzu filed his candidacy with the EC on Monday morning. Shortly after, Yameen’s top attorney, former vice president Dr. Mohamed Jameel Ahmed, announced that the former president had decided to accept the senate’s decision.