Maldives Joint Opposition coalition has filed complaints with the Elections Commissioner regarding complaints having surfaced that President Yameen’s campaign office has been using information and database on re-registration forms submitted to the Elections Commission.
Speaking regarding the matter, former Minister of Housing and Infrastructure Mohamed Aslam said that, the main opposition Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) had carried out the procedures of submitting over 1,000 re-registration forms from Sri Lanka to the Elections Commission during the duration window for re-registration was opened.
As such, Aslam revealed that Mohamed Gasam, former representative of Thinadhoo constituency in the Parliament, who is a frontrunner in leading one of the MDP campaign sites in capital city Male’, had brought the forms in.
The former minister further stressed that while Gasam’s contact number had been written down as reference in the forms, only the commission and the individual who had submitted the forms will be aware of this. However, Aslam revealed that, Gasam has been receiving calls from President Yameen’s campaign office inquiring on information about said forms.
It has been revealed that Gasam had been reached through his contact number by the campaign office amid a meeting with the elections commissioner, Ahmed Shareef, for information. He had also been reached for information through the office while he was meeting with media as well.
Aslam further stated that while it was believed that the President’s campaign office influences the commission’s database before, with recent events it has been made clear.
Aslam revealed that Gasam’s number was written down as the reference number upon request, since the forms were of MDP supporters registering in Colombo and their international numbers had been noted at first.
While it has been revealed that Gasam has been receiving calls from the President’s campaign office for inquiries on the forms, there is no explainable reason why and how the campaign office should have information on the re-registration forms that had privately been submitted to the EC.
“The President’s campaign office is calling to inquire on the re-registration procedure of an individual. No other entity but the Elections Commission will know this information that we submitted. It has now been made clear that the President’s campaign office has full access to the commission’s database” said Aslam.
Speaking to press, MDP’s Deputy Chairperson Ali Niyaz said that if a solution is not brought to these surfacing issues, questions on the validity of the approaching ballots will arise and that the suspicions of the opposition that re-registration work is being done in Muleeaage, the official residence of the President, has been cleared.
Niyaz said that issues in the re-registration procedures have always been there and that although the voters list has not been publicized by the commission yet, President Yameen’s campaign office has full access to the database.
Speaking on this issue, Jumhooree Party’s Secretary General Ahmed Sameer said that this is a matter of serious concern that must be thoroughly investigated, and called on relevant authorities to suspend the employees who are handling the re-registration works at the commission.