Parliament’s majority leader and Villimale MP Ahmed Nihan declared Wednesday that lawmakers of ruling Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) will “easily fail” the motion of no confidence submitted against parliament speaker Abdulla Maseeh.
The member of President Abdulla Yameen Abduul Gayoom’s faction of the divided PPM told Mihaaru that the no confidence vote against Maseeh is a move by the opposition to cause further dispute and clash within the parliament.
“PPM will easily put a stop to this,” he declared.
The motion of no confidence was spearheaded by the son of Former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom and the current president’s nephew, Dhiggaru MP Faris Maumoon. Mihaaru understands that it was Former President Maumoon’s faction of the divided ruling party that first suggested to seek a no confidence motion against the speaker.
Throwing back to lawmakers’ previous attempt at seeking a motion of no confidence against the speaker which was withdrawn, MP Nihan declared that such petitions are always withdrawn as the opposition is aware there can be no victory.
Of the 26 lawmakers that signed the petition seeking the no confidence vote, two are members of PPM. They are Thulusdhoo MP Mohamed Waheed Ibrahim and Dhiddhoo MP Abdul Latheef Mohamed.
Nihan warned that action will be taken against PPM parliamentary group members based on their representations of the party and should their actions violate the whip-line. However, he conceded that giving their signatures for the petition is not equivalent to giving their votes to pass the no confidence motion.
He went on to say that PPM lawmakers are on the same side and thus cannot be overtaken by opposition parties who “do not share common ground”.
A majority of votes in favour by the members present on that day’s sitting is required to pass a motion of no confidence against the speaker. Should the motion be passed on the parliament floor, Speaker Maseeh will be mandated to resign his post.
Lawmakers had previously sought a motion of no confidence against the speaker last year March with a petition of 22 signatures that was ultimately withdrawn without debate.