Jumhooree Party (JP) and The Democrats have begun discussions with to nominate a unified candidate for the upcoming presidential elections scheduled for September 9.
Senior officials of The Democrats, as well as Qasim Ibrahim, the leader and presidential candidate of JP, engaged in discussions. The meeting took place at Kunooz, the headquarters of the Jumhooree Party, earlier on Saturday afternoon. Former Vice President of the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) Mohamed Shifaz, Central Henveiru MP Ali Azim and former Managing Director of STO Hussain Amr participated in the meeting on behalf of The Democrats.
No details regarding the decision reached during the discussions between JP and The Democrats have been disclosed.
Close associates of former President Mohamed Nasheed engaged in discussions with JP regarding potential collaboration even before the establishment of The Democrats. Nasheed, who played a significant role in the formation of The Democrats, was instrumental in these discussions. However, these initial talks were eventually put on hold.
Qasim also initiated discussions with the Maldives National Party (MNP) two weeks ago in an effort to reach an agreement on a single presidential candidate. However, these discussions did not lead to a conclusive outcome.
Despite the discussions, both The Democrats and JP have proceeded to nominate their own presidential candidates for the upcoming elections. The Democrats have chosen Hulhudhoo MP Ilyas Labeeb as their presidential candidate. As of now, neither party has officially announced their nominees for running mates. However, there are speculations that Ilyas Labeeb has decided on the current Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Eva Abdulla, as his running mate.
Amid renewed discussions about the possibility of a unified candidate between The Democrats and JP, the incumbent President and Presidential candidate of MDP, Ibrahim Mohamed Solih, has officially nominated North Hithadhoo MP, Mohamed Aslam, as his running mate. The announcement was made by the party on Saturday, August 5.
The deadline for submitting candidacy to contest in the presidential elections is 2 pm on Monday, August 7. As of now, the only individual to have submitted the candidacy form is Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) presidential candidate and former President Abdulla Yameen. However, the Elections Commission rejected Yameen's candidacy due to his ongoing 11-year jail sentence. This decision has been appealed to the Supreme Court, which is expected to deliver its ruling at 10 am on Sunday, August 6.