Former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom proclaimed late Monday that it is in the best interest of the nation for him to work alongside with longtime rival, former President Mohamed Nasheed.
Making the remark in an opposition rally after the joint opposition submitted a motion of no confidence against Parliament Speaker Abdulla Maseeh with the signatures of 45 lawmakers, Maumoon countered the criticisms against him for working with Nasheed.
In addition, Maumoon elicited much applause as he stated the he and Nasheed are working not for individual or personal gains but at a policy level.
Acknowledging the tumultuous past he shares with former President Nasheed, Maumoon declared that all of those are now bygones.
Stressing that the national interest is far more important than the past dispute between them, Maumoon acknowledged the help and support received from Nasheed in submitting the no confidence motion to Parliament.
Highlighting that victory is given by God, Maumoon urged everyone to remain strong in good Islamic values.
Recognizing the efforts of opposition leaders in gathering signatures, Maumoon emphasized that Jumhoory Party's leader and lawmaker Qasim Ibrahim laid much efforts despite being aware of the risks and dangers he may face.
Moreover, the former president grew emotional as he mentioned the jailed opposition leader of religiously conservative Adhaalath Party, Sheikh Imran Abdulla, who is convicted of inciting violence during an opposition protest. Noting that he was an old friend, Maumoon pronounced that his strength will not be shaken by any actions of the government.
He also urged to upsurge the number of signatures for the motion of no confidence against Speaker Maseeh from 45 to 55 or 60, as he invited other lawmakers to join the reform movements of the joint opposition.