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EC registers new political party 'People's National Congress'

Fathmath Shaahunaz
31 January 2019, MVT 19:59
Former President Abdulla Yameen (R) and acting President of PNC Abdul Raheem Abdulla at the convening meeting of PNC. PHOTO/MIHAARU
Fathmath Shaahunaz
31 January 2019, MVT 19:59

Elections Commission (EC) has decided to officially register the new political party, People's National Congress (PNC).

The electoral watchdog is to hand over the party's registration on Thursday night.

PNC was formed by close aides of former President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom. They had resigned from opposition Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) to establish the new party. With Yameen's support, PNC was formed due to the leadership dispute case of PPM which is still ongoing at the Supreme Court.

The EC had come under fire for delaying the authorisation of PNC to hold its convening meeting. According to the electoral watchdog, the delay ensued over issues with the forms that were submitted, and complaints raised that assets and resources of PPM had been utilised to create the new party.

However, the committee EC had put together to look into the issue, declared on Wednesday that PNC's permit could not be revoked despite clear proof that PPM's resources were used in its formative process. The committee explained that the recent amendment to the Political Parties Act, which prohibited the action, was made following the establishment of PNC.

The amendment states that the permit issued to create a new political party could be taken away if it were established using the resources and members of existing parties.