Democrats accuse MDP of sabotaging incoming govt; MDP denies it

MDP's PG leader Mohamed Aslam speaks to press on October 31, 2023. (Photo/People's Majlis)

The Maldivian Democrats Party (MDP)’s parliamentary group says that they have no intention of impeding President-elect Dr. Mohamed Muizzu’s inauguration next month, while the Democrats accuse the MDP of misusing their parliamentary majority to sabotage the incoming administration.

In a press conference on Tuesday, MDP’s PG leader Mohamed Aslam said that while the party is deeply concerned over what it sees as an attempt by the Democrats to thwart a no-confidence motion against Speaker Mohamed Nasheed, the party’s lawmakers do not harbor the intention of impeding Muizzu’s inauguration – which is set to take place on November 17.

“We have not made any such decision to impede the new administration. We will operate as a responsible opposition,” he said.

“The new administration will receive MDP’s cooperation. We have no intention of bothering the president-elect. But we will speak out against the wrongs done by the administration.”

However, the MDP PG does not believe that the oath taken by the president-elect in a sitting after thwarting a no-confidence motion against the speaker will be legitimate, he said.

Parliament Speaker, former President Mohamed Nasheed presides over a parliamentary sitting. (Photo/People's Majlis)

He reiterated MDP’s stand that it will not endorse the cabinet in such a situation.

Aslam said that MDP does not see any purpose in going to the inauguration ceremony – which is set to be held at the Republic Square – and physically disrupting it.

“But the MDP parliamentary group will not accept the oath to be legitimate, that it was taken in a legitimate sitting,” he said.

Aslam said that the MDP PG will not cooperate in parliamentary committee work either, as long as the motion remains stymied.


In a press conference shortly after MDP’s one concluded, Democrats’ PG leader Ali Azim accused the MDP of misusing its parliamentary majority to sabotage the incoming administration.

Democrats' PG leader Ali Azim speaks to the press on October 31, 2023. (Photo/People's Majlis)

He said that the efforts by MDP lawmakers to disrupt parliamentary sittings was evidence of that.

“In addition to Dr. Muizzu’s inauguration, the 2024 state budget – which is crucial to the functioning of the government in the coming days - is also tabled at the Parliament. The incoming administration will certainly not find it easy to serve the Maldivian people unless the budget is passed,” he said.

Azim said that the assertion by MDP that no other parliamentary work can be carried out without processing the Nasheed no-confidence motion lacks any legal basis.

He described it as a clear attempt to harass the incoming administration.

Azim said that MDP had withdraw its earlier no-confidence motion against Nasheed after the two parties came to an agreement.

He said that the Democrats do not believe it “the best example” for MDP to violate the agreement and resubmit the motion.

Azim said that the decision by MDP to resubmit the motion after losing the recent presidential election showed the party’s leadership lacked focus.

“We are not working outside the bounds of the rules or the constitution. The Democrats are working at the Parliament in accordance with the laws and regulations,” he said.

The Parliament had been scheduled to hear the no-confidence motion submitted by the MDP against their former leader on Sunday, and again, on Monday. However, Deputy Speaker Eva Abdulla, Nasheed’s cousin and fellow Democrats member, called in sick. She informed the Parliament that she was recovering from dengue, which she was diagnosed with last week.

Deputy Speaker Eva Abdulla presides over a parliamentary sitting. (Photo/People's Majlis)

Parliament’s Secretary General Fathimath Niusha decided the sitting cannot be held without Eva there to chair it. The motion was postponed to Wednesday.

The decision drew protest from MDP lawmakers, who have filed a constitutional case with the Supreme Court, seeking to suspend further sittings until work on the motion is done, first.

Tuesday’s sitting, during which the Parliament was scheduled to work on the MVR 6.5 billion supplementary budget, couldn’t be held after MDP lawmakers showed up with horns and disrupted the sitting.

The MDP had originally submitted no-confidence motions against both Nasheed and Eva earlier this year. The motion against Eva was submitted with the endorsement on 50 MPs in May, and the motion against Nasheed followed, with the endorsement of 54 MPs, in June.

But the MDP withdrew the motions in September, while the party was engaged in negotiations with the Democrats – the party to which both Nasheed and Eva belong – for the presidential runoff election.

The recent motion against Nasheed was submitted with the endorsement of 49 MPs on October 9.

The MDP parliamentary group convened for a meeting week, during which they passed a three-line whip to vote in favor of the motion.

The vote was unanimous.

The MDP holds a majority at the Parliament, with 56 MPs. 43 votes are required to pass the motion.