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Campaign trail: strongholds

Daily roundup of news from the campaign trail.



A daily roundup of headlines made by the candidates, running mates and their surrogates on the campaign trail.

August 31

  • President Yameen to Lhaviyani atoll to inaugurate projects (Avas)
  • Naifaru public gives warm welcome to President Yameen (PSM)
  • A big “Eid” for Naifaru with president’s visit (Mihaaru)
  • Lhaviyani atoll hospital building and Naifaru harbour opened (VFP)
  • Opposition sends lawyers to Adeeb to find out where the money is: president (Sun)
  • Opposition couldn’t get money from Adeeb: president (VFP)
  • Maldivians wouldn’t want a ruler who doesn’t have the competence of President Yameen: health minister (PSM)
  • Public will only accept a ruler of President Yameen’s calibre: health minister (Sun)
  • “Empowered women” march in Hulhumalé (PSM)
  • President Yameen makes many pledges for the development of Naifaru (PSM)
  • Youth City is the new Medina for youth: President Yameen (VFP)
  • MDP is creating discord among the public: Nihan (PSM)
  • Warm welcome for President Yameen on the opposition candidate’s island (PSM)
  • Many people welcome president on Ibu’s island (Mihaaru)
  • Warm welcome for President Yameen on Ibu’s birth island! (Sun)
  • Warm welcome for president on Ibu’s birth island (Avas)

Hundreds of people greeted President Abdulla Yameen on the north-central islands of Naifaru and Hinnavaru, the former a stronghold of support. He urged islanders to translate the warm welcome to votes on September 23.

With economic development the centrepiece of his re-election bid, most of the president’s campaign trips are planned to coincide with official ceremonies to open infrastructures such as harbours or to inaugurate water and sewage services.

On Naifaru, Yameen accused the opposition of trying to secure campaign funds from his jailed former vice president. But Ahmed Adeeb has been telling lawyers that he does not have any money, he said.

He kept up attacks on the opposition coalition, whose parties and leaders were “at each other’s throats up until yesterday”. The coalition would fall apart if its convicted leaders were freed, Yameen said, as each would want the presidency for himself.

  • Thinadhoo hasn’t changed, President Yameen will be humiliated: Saudhulla/Abulho (Mihaaru)
  • Ibu appeals to supporters not to get caught up in emotion (Raajje)
  • Nothing should be done with charged emotions, votes are what we will seek: Ibu (Mihaaru)
  • Ibu’s appeal: campaign without getting caught up in emotion (Avas)
  • Victory will be for the righteous, vote to change the state: Faisal (Raajje)
  • We will quickly complete Fares-Maathoda airport: Ibu (Raajje)
  • Ibu pledges to complete Fares-Maathoda airport (Mihaaru)
  • Fares-Maathoda airport will be completed in opposition government: Ibu (Sun)
  • Faisal’s question: can senior government official remain in power forever? (Raajje)
  • Faisal responds to criticism over not voting for budget (Avas)
  • Public isn’t calling out for development to line the pocket’s of certain people: Faisal (Vnews)
  • Faisal concludes trip to nine Baa atoll islands in Kihaadhoo (Raajje)
  • We will stop the waste by this government: Faisal (Vnews)
  • Before huge corruption, the government took away freedom of speech: Ali Hussain (Raajje)
  • Ibu’s retort: there is a manifesto everyone agrees on (Mihaaru)
  • There is a manifesto everyone agrees on: Ibu (Avas)
  • If the stealing is stopped, development could be brought twofold: Ibu (Raajje)
  • A long line to shake Ibu’s hand in Thinadhoo! (Mihaaru)
  • Many people come out and show support for Ibu in Thinadhoo (Raajje)
  • We will make the public equal in the state budget: Faisal (Mihaaru)
  • A man who was cruel to his brother won’t be compassionate towards the public: Inthi (Mihaaru)
  • Attorney general in Ibu’s government will look into President Yameen’s theft (Raajje)
  • Big pledges from Ibu to fishermen (Sun)
  • Ibu’s pledges to fishermen with ways to sell fish overseas (Avas)
  • Many pledges from Ibu to fishermen (Mihaaru)
  • Ibu’s pledge: We will establish SME bank and issue loans in six months (Raajje)
  • We will not abolish STO or WAMCO, no fear for employees: Ibu (Vnews)
  • STO and WAMCO will not be abolished: Ibu (VFP)
  • Islam can only be protected in Ibu government: Shidhaatha (Raajje)
  • From a legal perspective, there’s only one candidate: Wadde (Raajje)
  • Members must vote for Ibu if they want to save PPM: Ameen (Vnews)
  • Thinadhoo will not say yes to tyranny: Saudhulla (Raajje)
  • About 20 days left to talk about tyranny: Saudhulla (Vnews)
  • Big pledges from Ibu for Thinadhoo! (Raajje)
  • The whole Maldives has risen up to elect Ibu as a national task: Shifaz (Raajje)

Kicking off his tour of Gaaf Dhaal atoll, opposition candidate Ibrahim Mohamed Solih ‘Ibu’ urged supporters to campaign peacefully.

The appeal came after 18 activists were arrested on Kolamaafushi island over the vandalism of the ruling party office. They are all accused of terrorism, according to defence lawyers. The Gaaf Alif Villigili magistrate court on Thursday night remanded the suspects to police custody for 15 days.

Ibu is due to visit Kolamaafushi on Saturday, in defiance of an appeal by the police to postpone the trip. He is accompanied on the southern tour by exiled Jumhooree Party leader Gasim Ibrahim’s wife Aishath Nahula and several opposition lawmakers.

The opposition parliamentary leader made numerous pledges on Vaadhoo, including a gas plant and fuel storage unit for the island as well as an international airport in Gaaf Dhaal atoll.

On Fiyoaree island, Ibu declared that the coalition partners have reached an agreement on policies and manifesto pledges. It was in response to criticism from Yameen over disagreements on “fundamental issues” such as repealing constitutional amendments and whether Ibu would rule for an interim period. Visiting Fares-Maathoda next, he promised to finish the ongoing airport project, stressing the importance of transport networks for economic growth.

Ibu was greeted by a long line of supporters on Thinadhoo island, a population hub in the southern atolls and traditionally a stronghold of the main opposition Maldivian Democratic Party. Speaking at a well-attended rally on the island, he pledged to eliminate the tariff on diesel, facilitate direct trade between local fishermen and overseas buyers, and to ban foreign vessels from Maldivian waters.