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Maldives parliament approves new VP

Mohamed Visham
20 July 2016, MVT 15:30
Abdulla Jihad taking the oath as the new vice president in June. PHOTO/PRESIDENT'S OFFICE
Mohamed Visham
20 July 2016, MVT 15:30

The government controlled parliament on Wednesday approved the appointment of Abdulla Jihad as the vice president.

President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom named his finance minister Jihad as his new deputy last month.

Jihad is the third vice president in three years after his two predecessors had been impeached after falling out with the president.

During Tuesday's parliament sitting, 51 lawmakers voted in favour of Jihad's appointment out of the 63 members present.

Most of the opposition and pro-government lawmakers alike spoke in support of Jihad. However, some opposition MPs labelled the former finance minister as a "puppet" of president Yameen.

Yameen’s first vice president Dr Mohamed Jameel Ahmed had fled to the UK last July days before he was impeached in a controversial vote which was alleged to have been orchestrated by his eventual successor Ahmed Adheeb Abdul Ghafoor who himself was impeached following a blast aboard the presidential speedboat.

He has now been convicted and sentenced to 15 years in prison for orchestrating the blast, now confirmed as a plot to kill the president.

The vice president’s post has been vacant since October last year after Adheeb was arrested in connection to the blast.

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