EC seeks formal complaint regarding intimidation of gov workers

Elections Commission chairman Fuad Thaufeeq. (Sun Photo/Fayaz Moosa)

The Elections Commission (EC) has appealed for the submission of a formal complaint regarding remarks made during a campaign rally suggesting that the main ruling People’s National Congress (PNC)’s candidate for the Hinnavaru parliamentary seat should have “control” over the employees of the Maldives Industrial Fisheries Company (MIFCO) fish factory in Lh. Felivaru.

At a campaign rally for Mohamed Abdul Rahman on Friday night, one of the speakers said that the government must call employees, even those who support the opposition, and instruct them to provide their “cooperation.”

“And if they refuse to join us, we must take necessary measures. We may face challenges in winning this otherwise,” he said.

He also asked Fisheries Minister Ahmed Shiyam to appeal to President Dr. Mohamed Muizzu to grant the PNC candidate “control” over the employees of the Felivaru fish factory.

It is believed that there was a government minister present at the rally, but it is unclear who it was.

A video clip of the speech went viral on social media on Friday night, with many tagging EC’s social media handles and expressing concern that the remarks constitute an act of voter intimidation.

Fuad Thaufeeq, the chairman of EC, retweeted the video, saying that “this is not OK.”

He asked the person who shared the video to submit a complaint form to the National Complaints Bureau “for necessary actions.”

Social media users questioned whether EC does not have the prerogative to investigate such cases itself.

Fuad responded that the commission can only look into cases that are submitted to it, and that it must follow set procedures.