Hassan Latheef elected leader of Democrats with 1,704 votes

Democrats' leader Hassan Latheef speaks to the press on October 22, 2023. (Sun Photo/Maahil Athif)

Preliminary results show that The Democrats’ Interim Chairperson Hassan Latheef led polls to win the party’s leadership during the internal elections held on Saturday.

As per the preliminary results announced by Central Henveiru MP Ali Azim on behalf of The Democrats on Sunday night, West Henveiru MP Hassan Latheef received 1,704 votes while his competitor, former STO MD Hussain Amer Rashad received 1,300 votes.

Azim said The Democrats had 5.083 members as of Saturday, of which 3,209 members voted in the internal election – amounting to 54 percent of the members. He added that this marks the highest number of members who have voted in the internal election of a political party in recent times.

The internal election on Saturday which was held from 10:00am to 4:00pm on Saturday was to elect members for 32 posts within the party, including the posts of the party’s leader and deputy leader. A total of 70 members contested for the posts.

Some members took to social media last night to express discontent after the publication of the results of the election was delayed. Some of them alleged alterations to the results as well.

Near 10pm, The Democrats, in its official account on X, said the results will be announced today.

An hour after the post, Hassan Latheef announced his win. Amr contested the claim, citing he had been leading polls as per the result sheet.

However, in a turn of events on Sunday, Amr said he will no longer comment on the results.

The Democrats was formed from a breakaway faction from main opposition Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP), which comprised of members that supported former president Mohamed Nasheed.

The party received the green light from the Elections Commission to proceed with its formation on May 24th.

Following this, the party contested September’s presidential election coming in third with 15,800 votes.

As per EC, The Democrats had 3,280 as of the end of August.