President Dr Mohamed Waheed has today called on all to refrain from using language that may cause anger, fear, or animosity among us, and not to add fuel to the political fires raging on within the country. The President made this appeal while addressing the nation this afternoon.
Speaking in this regard, the President called upon the Maldives National Defence Force and Maldives Police Service to prioritise the national interests, to trust the institutions created to form and execute laws, and to remain sincere in upholding the Constitution and the rule of law.
In his speech, the President said that the most important right accorded to the citizens in a democracy is the right to a free and fair vote. He also noted that the greatest responsibility of an independent State is to protect and uphold the integrity of that vote and to ensure that each eligible voter has the right to cast their vote, and that each vote is counted.
President Waheed noted that a presidential candidate had submitted to the Elections Commission, and filed a case at the Supreme Court, in accordance with the relevant laws, on allegations regarding irregularities in the voting process during the first round of voting, which was held on September 7. He also pointed out that the ensuing events that followed have put the country into some confusion.
The President underlined that the Maldives has so far overcome significant challenges in the country’s political life by exercising calm and patience, and expressed his confidence that the current issues would be resolved, and the election process completed in a timely manner. He further said that a swift ruling on the on-going case by the Supreme Court would help cool the passions in the current situation, noting the importance of substantiating the allegations of election frauds with facts in a Court of law.
“Today, presidential candidates, political parties, the Maldivian people, friendly governments, and international organisations are all hoping that the elections process will be completed as soon as possible, and a new President will be sworn-in on 11th November. I give my full assurance that the Government will do everything possible to ensure that happens. The Government is currently making the necessary preparations to ensure a smooth transfer of power takes place.”
In his speech, President Waheed reminded all Maldivian people that every moment of discord and disharmony amongst us, creates opportunities for external forces to intervene in our internal affairs.
“We are capable of making our own decisions. But that is possible only when we protect the Constitution and institutions established under that Constitution; and only when institutions cooperate, rather than attempt to weaken each other”, said the President.