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Speaker Nasheed reiterates support for parliamentary system in Maldives

Fathmath Shaahunaz
08 December 2019, MVT 14:04
Speaker of Parliament Mohamed Nasheed pictured during the 'Ask Speaker' programme broadcast by PSM on December 7, 2019. PHOTO/MAJILIS
Fathmath Shaahunaz
08 December 2019, MVT 14:04

Speaker of Parliament and former president, Mohamed Nasheed, reiterated his conviction that a parliamentary system of government is best suited for Maldives, asserting that the current presidential system is not ideal to ensure peace and order.

The speaker made the declaration late Saturday in response to a question posed by a member of the public, during the 'Ask Speaker' programme jointly held by the parliament and state-run Public Service Media (PSM).

Replying to whether a parliamentary or presidential system should be established in Maldives, Nasheed stated that he has always supported the parliamentary system since his school days.

"I've never been one to support the presidential system. I do not believe that a presidential system is the most suitable to governing a nation and ensuring peace", he said.

Nasheed also received questions alluding to the opposition's accusations of the current administration planning to establish a parliamentary system in Maldives with Nasheed as the Prime Minister. The allegation was also previously made by Qasim Ibrahim, the leader of Jumhooree Party, a member of the ruling coalition.

Regarding the possibility of a plan to annul the presidential system for a parliamentary one, Nasheed stated that he would not take action unless President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih and the ruling Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) as a whole wanted to bring about the change.

"It is up to the people to change the [governing system]. Certainly, I would act on it when everyone in MDP wanted it", he said.

However, in response to whether he would become the Prime Minister, Nasheed said, "If there were a parliamentary system in the Maldives and I ran for the elections, assuming that I were the majority leader party, I would become the Prime Minister".

The Maldives established the presidential system in 2007 following a referendum vote. However, following Nasheed's victory as the first democratically elected president of Maldives in 2008, he asserted his support for a parliamentary system.

While Nasheed has reiterated his stance on the matter, the opposition continues to allege that the current administration would move to establish a parliamentary system once MDP attained a super majority in the parliament.

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