Jumhooree Party (JP) Leader Ibrahim Qasim requested on Saturday that his party's leadership not embarrass the party by resigning from membership after Qasim announced he was running for president.
This request was made in a tweet to address the letters of resignation he had received from party members following his announcement that included comments about Qasim and the JP that he was dissatisfied with.
Since Qasim announced he would be contesting in the presidential election scheduled to be held on September 9 of this year, a number of political appointees within the current government have been resigning from JP and showing their support to President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih.
Qasim had questioned the intentions behind their sudden loyalty change and accused them of switching parties only to defend their positions.
"Some of the JP members in government positions are resigning from JP to keep their posts. Why don't you announce your resignation from JP with your honest intentions, which is to keep your jobs, instead of embarrassing the party and its leadership?!" Qasim had tweeted in Dhivehi.
Three JP members were appointed as ministers in the current administration: Minister for Transport and Civil Aviation Aishath Nahula, who is the JP leader's wife; Minister for Fisheries, Marine Resources, and Agriculture Dr. Hussain Rasheed; and Minister for Tourism Dr. Abdulla Mausoom.
From these three ministers, Dr. Mausoom has so far announced that he will be supporting President Solih during this election. Nahula and Dr. Rasheed are staying with Qasim as of yet.
Some of the senior officials in the government in JP's slots that have so far left the party include: Immigration Controller Mohamed Ahmed Hussain ("Hanafi"), MTCC Managing Director Adam Azim, MWSC Managing Director Hassan Shah and Deputy Minister for Arts, Culture, and Heritage, Waleeda Waleed.
Qasim is contesting for president with the support of former president and Speaker of the Parliament Mohamed Nasheed. There has been speculation that Nasheed's faction wishes to appoint Hussain Amr, the former Managing Director of the State Trading Company (STO), as his running mate.
Adhaalath Party and Maldives Development Alliance (MDA) have so far agreed to stay with the Maldivian Democratic Party's (MDP) presidential candidate, President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih. One of the renowned tourism pioneers in the Maldives, Mohamed "Champa" Moosa, announced on Friday that he was with President Solih as well.