President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom has criticized the opposition coalition's presidential candidate Ibrahim Mohamed Solih (Ibu), highlighting Ibu's ten-year service as a parliament member.
While speaking at Nilandhoo, Faafu Atoll, as part of his campaign trail, President Yameen disparagingly stated that the people of Maldives have indeed experienced Ibu in a position of power for the past 10 years. Referring to Ibu's service as a member of the parliament, as well as the leader of Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP)'s parliamentary group, Yameen made further comments eluding to Ibu's 'futile' services.
"Ibu has had ample time to propose better development plans, as well as retread all governmental services during his time as a member of the parliament for the past 10 years. Therefore, we cannot rely on the sole fact of Ibu not having been in a position of power prior to this, for him to be a viable candidate this time. We have, in fact, experienced him", said President Yameen.
Furthermore, President Yameen stated that development of a country was not a sole responsibility of any president, and that members of parliament have adequate power to weigh in. Power to make changes to government budget, as well as the passing of the budget, are well in the power of any members of parliament, he said, adding that Ibu has had enough time to 'chastise' the government.
President Yameen further highlighted the innumerable efforts made by the opposition parties to overthrow the current government, and credited the well-wishes of the public for his lasting five-year reign. He also mentioned the many allegations the opposition has made about him but highlighted their failure to prove them.
"Why haven't they been able to officially make any allegations against me? If these allegations are accurate, they should be able to jail me accordingly. A group of people who were able to bribe the Supreme Court for the February 1 court order should be capable of anything", President Yameen said in reference to the alleged coup in early February.
According to President Yameen, the current administration has accomplished more development than any other government that had been in power previously. He further questioned why the past government did not execute developmental projects the way the current government has.