Jumhooree Party (JP) leader Qasim Ibrahim has sent a reply to President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih stating that he is determined to implement the decision taken by the Jumhooree Party (JP) Council regarding this year's presidential election.
He forwarded the reply to MDP's presidential candidate President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih in response to an invitation sent by the President on February 19, seeking discussions on forming a coalition for the September 9 presidential election.
In his letter, Qasim stated that the JP Congress, held on February 23-24, unanimously passed a resolution to nominate a candidate for the presidential elections. The resolution was subsequently submitted to the council, which unanimously accepted and approved him as the JP's candidate, he added.
"Therefore, I remain steadfast in implementing the decision of the Jumhooree Party Council for the benefit of the people of Maldives. I am sincerely grateful for the invitation extended to our party," he expressed in his letter.
President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih's letter received a response after a delay of over three months, while a ceremony has been scheduled for this evening in Malé City to officially hand over Jumhooree Party's presidential ticket to Qasim.
The relationship between President Solih, Qasim, and Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) and JP has been strained in recent times. As a consequence of decisions taken by the JP Congress and Council, some political appointees who belonged to Jumhooree Party left the party and even aligned themselves with President Solih.
On the other hand, the relationship between Qasim and MDP President Mohamed Nasheed, who spearheaded the creation of a separate faction within the party, has significantly improved. Discussions had even taken place to form a coalition for the upcoming presidential election.
However, the discussion hit a roadblock with the proposal for a parliamentary system, causing the dialogue to come to a standstill. In light of the shifting political landscape, Qasim recently responded critically to Nasheed's actions.
The JP Council, held on March 14, unanimously endorsed Qasim's candidacy in the upcoming presidential election as the party's candidate, and form alliances with other potential parties. A resolution passed on May 6 empowered Gasim to spearhead negotiations for a possible coalition in the presidential election.
In his response, Qasim outlined the reasons behind his decision to support President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih in the 2018 presidential elections. He emphasized that the Jumhooree Party (JP) had actively and wholeheartedly worked towards the election of Mohamed Nasheed, the MDP candidate in the 2008 presidential elections.
Qasim noted that the Jumhooree Party had collaborated with MDP on both occasions when an MDP candidate had bee elected as president.
"In the past, Jumhooree Party supported and collaborated with the MDP candidate under the assurance that the Maldives territory, independence, sovereignty, religion, strategic assets, economy, justice, social stability, development, and prosperity will be protected," Qasim said in his reply.
However, he highlighted that the party's Council had approved their own presidential candidate this time, taking into account the way things have been handled under President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih's leadership.