Members of parliament have begun travelling to atolls for campaign purposes ahead of the upcoming Local Council and Women's Development Committee elections, under the directive of former president and Speaker of Parliament Mohamed Nasheed.
Speaker Nasheed has previously stated that MPs who wished to travel to atolls for campaign purposes would be allowed to do so upon their request, despite the prevailing threat of a third wave of devastating Covid-19 infections across the country.
As such, Wednesday's sitting of the People's Majlis saw only 27 parliamentarians in attendance, as an additional seven MPs had taken leave from their official duties, including three MPs representing Fuvahmulah City.
At parliament, Speaker Nasheed had confirmed that all three MPs who had gone on leave had done so under his directive as they had expressed a desire to travel and conduct campaigns ahead of the upcoming elections. He stated that MP for North Fuvahmulah constituency Mohamed Rasheed, MP for Central Fuvahmulah constituency Hussain Mohamed Didi, and MP for South Fuvahmulah constituency Mohamed Mumthaz had been issued leaves to travel to their constituencies for campaign purposes, and that they had been informed that they would need to return in one day after taking the leave.
The issue of being given campaign opportunities had been debated at parliament earlier as well, with opposition parties raising concerns through an emergency motion. The following debate had seen MDP MPs declare that the opposition would need to learn how to adapt and campaign as required in light of the present state of national affairs and public health.