Gayoom seeks HRCM intervention over ruling party electoral rights

Former president and PPM president Gayoom pictured speaking during a ceremony. MIHAARU PHOTO/MOHAMED SHARUHAAN

Former president and PPM president Gayoom pictured speaking during a ceremony. MIHAARU PHOTO/MOHAMED SHARUHAAN

Former president and leader of ruling Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) Maumoon Abdul Gayoom called upon the Human Rights Commission of Maldives (HRCM) on Monday to protect the electoral rights of PPM members.

In a letter to HRCM’s president Aminath Eenas, Gayoom stated that the lower court’s order for him to hand over party control to his half-brother and incumbent president Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom violated the party charter. He declared that the party leader, who was democratically elected by party members, has been ousted without the members’ consent.

“… as the party’s president has been removed from position in violation of the party’s charter, Political Parties Act and PPM members’ suffrage, and as I believe there is a role for the Commission to play in the interest of PPM members and citizens, I request [the Commission] to take action to protect the electoral rights of PPM members for their and the citizens’ sake,” said Gayoom in his letter.

Gayoom added in his letter that the party council’s regulations clearly state those eligible for the council’s chair under circumstances without a party leader.

He also noted that the conflicts within PPM had commenced when President Yameen was awarded the electoral ticket for a second term without a primary, which is considered a violation of the party charter by some members.

The public fall-out between the elder Gayoom and President Yameen has divided PPM into two factions, with a separate council put together by either. The two councils are electing members for party positions, both declaring that their faction is the “real PPM”.

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