Independent presidential candidate Faris Maumoon has chosen not to endorse any other candidate during the second round of the election, which is scheduled for September 30.
Jumhooree Party’s (JP) Leader Qasim Ibrahim had announced last week he would not be supporting any candidate during the second round of the election as well.
Speaking to journalists during a press conference on Wednesday to announce his decision, Faris said that the inability of any candidate to secure more than 50 percent of the votes means that means they all failed to produce an acceptable manifesto.
“When you look at the votes we got we do think we have a lot of support,” Faris, who had received one percent of votes on the first round of elections said.
He said he does not believe that even if he announces his support for a particular candidate, the citizens that voted for him would follow his lead.
Faris, who received 2,979 votes in the first round held on September 9, unveiled a set of objectives that any incoming administration seeking his support in the next round must achieve if they assume office.
They also extended the deadline for both candidates to make a decision on the mater.
He said that these discussions had been ongoing for an extended period, with the aim of reaching consensus on additions to the manifesto that would benefit the nation. However, given that the significant changes required are of a systemic nature, he expressed skepticism about the ability of the major parties participating in the election to successfully undertake such an endeavor.
“It is unlikely those parties will be able to bring forth the kind of manifesto we managed, while it will also be difficult for certain parties to bring the changes we wish to bring,” Faris said.
Malé City Mayor and presidential candidate for Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) and People's National Congress (PNC) coalition, Dr. Mohamed Muizzu led the first round of the elections, having secured 101,635 votes. His contender, the incumbent President and presidential candidate for Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) Ibrahim Mohamed Solih received 88,161 votes.
Faris said while they are not backing any candidate in the second round of the election, their priority now lies in ensuring that they are able to secure seats in the parliament election that will be held next year.