Former president Mohamed Nasheed would be allowed the opportunity to contest the next presidential elections through the efforts of the newly formed opposition coalition, former vice president and coalition head Dr Mohamed Jameel Ahmed said Thursday.
Maldives United Opposition was established in London where key members of the opposition are in exile including Jameel and Nasheed.
Nasheed’s jailing on a terror charge last year was a key trigger of the current political crisis. He was allowed to leave the country in an internationally brokered deal in January.
Jameel had meanwhile fled to the UK last July days before he was impeached in a controversial vote. At the time, the Adhaalath Party leader Sheikh Imran Abdulla and former Defence Minister Mohamed Nazim were already in jail.
Five rival opposition groups had announced a united front to remove President Abdulla Yameen from office.
The group brings together the Maldivian Democratic Party, the Adhaalath Party, two of Yameen’s former deputies Jameel and his successor Ahmed Adheeb Abdul Ghafoor and his former defence minister Nazim.
Nasheed, Sheikh Imran Abdulla, and former Nazim were designated as advisors.
In a video message for the opening of a MUO office in neighbouring Sri Lanka, the ex-VP reiterated that despite divulges in opinion, the opposition had united for the country and its people.
Jameel expressed hope that through the efforts of the coalition, Maldives will witness a free and fair presidential elections in 2018.
"Through our efforts I want to see president Nasheed given the opportunity to contest in the elections. That all politicians given the chance to contest," Jameel said.
The former VP insisted that the Colombo office would be a major boost to the efforts of the coalition to restore democracy in the Maldives.