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Everyone has the right to form political parties: President Dr Muizzu

President Dr Mohamed Muizzu stated today that everyone has the right to form political parties in Maldives, adding that this is a fact he warmly embraces.

Mariyath Mohamed
10 April 2024, MVT 14:15
President Dr. Muizzu speaks to the press at his official residence today.
Mariyath Mohamed
10 April 2024, MVT 14:15

President Dr Mohamed Muizzu stated today that everyone has the right to form political parties in Maldives, adding that this is a fact he warmly embraces.

The President made these remarks while speaking to media about the SO Police response last night to the discord that arose due to obstructions in holding former President Abdulla Yameen led People's National Front (PNF)'s Formation Meeting.

The President said that there should be absolute opportunities to register a party in the name of PNF and that he welcomes the party's success last night in completing the legal formalities for its formation.

"Even if some other persons want to create another political party, I will welcome that. There must be freedom in this nation, I will never obstruct that. That is my policy," the President said.

PNF's Formation Meeting was initially scheduled to be held at Ghiyasudheen International School at 21:00 hrs last night. However, by yesterday afternoon, the school decided to cancel the agreement citing logistical difficulties, and informed PNF of this via email. PNF still attempted to continue with holding their meeting at the school's hall, leading to the school seeking police intervention. This resulted in SO Police arriving on the scene, ending in altercations between the police and PNF members and supporters.

Police have said that they attended the scene on the request of the school received via the Ministry of Education.

President Dr Muizzu has stated today that officers from the SO Police division had been sent to respond to the incident against his explicit instructions. He revealed that he has asked for an investigation report on the matter from the Minister of Homeland Security and Technology and Commissioner of Police, stating it has to be delivered ahead of sunset today.

The President is deeply concerned about the SO Police being sent to the scene against his policies.

"It is something I am clearly against. It is a clearly laid out policy of mine. The Home Minister is aware of that. So is the CP. And as a whole, the entire Police Service will be aware that it is my policy to not use the SO police. That they still went, against my policies, this is something I am deeply worried about," he stated.

He expressed regrets that these actions had resulted in both civilians and members of the police force having sustained varying levels of injuries.

No obstruction to political expression

The President reiterated that this government will not take action against anyone for acting in line with their political ideologies, or speaking in support of their political ideologies, asserting that so far in his administration, no one has been summoned to Police for such a reason.

"It will not happen even in the future. No one will be taken to Police for being a political person. That is something I will not do. So if someone wants to form a political party, they should absolutely be able to do so," he said.

The President said that if PNF is unable to get a hall to hold the meeting in, then other arrangements must be made for them. However, the bigger issue now is the conflict that arose due to police acting against his explicit instructions, he said.

"Without SO Police responding to the incident, it could have easily been solved through offering other options. There's the Social Centre, or Usfasgan'du, or Raalhugan'du area, or some building under Government purview, there might even have been a place available at Dharubaaruge. There are many options that could have been sought," he said.

He reiterated that this government would not obstruct any political gatherings.

"The policies that I want for this nation, the policy of bringing peace to the nation, the policy of not harming political persons in any way or form, the policy of not abusing the powers granted to Police, I will implement those. I assure you I will implement those," the President affirmed.

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