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Campaign trail: show me the money

Daily roundup of news from the campaign trail.



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

August 26

  • A new chapter in Ibu’s experience and trust: “Not a puppet”! (Mihaaru)
  • Ibu appeals to disclose information about corruption (Vnews)
  • Special campaign rally in Lanka tomorrow with Nasheed and Ibu (Mihaaru)
  • Extraordinary welcome for Faisal in Milandhoo! (Vnews)
  • Don’t be scared of losing jobs in the one month left, we will give back your job: Faisal (Raajje)
  • Nation today is at the point where the people could lose it: Faisal (Vnews)
  • Ibu to Sri Lanka (Raajje)
  • We will give budget to secure children’s rights: Faisal (Mihaaru)
  • Faisal appeals against overstepping legal bounds (Vnews)
  • This government has failed big time, there’s no evil they haven’t done: Faisal (Raajje)
  • I call for investigation and action against call to assassinate Nasheed: Faisal (Vnews)

Opposition candidate Ibrahim Mohamed Solih ‘Ibu’ revealed in an interview that he was planning to retire next year at the end of his fifth term in parliament. But he accepted the nomination as an alternative candidate to exiled former president Mohamed Nasheed with the backing of other leaders in the opposition coalition. He would “not be anyone’s puppet”, including the childhood friend with whom he also has differences of opinion.

Ibu’s philosophy is consensus-building through negotiation. Unlike failed alliances in the past, he believes the coalition of former rivals would last because it was not formed hastily ahead of a run-off election. Legislation would be passed to give legal weight to coalition agreements.

But after the five-year national unity government, Ibu said it would be in the best interests of the country to allow different ideologies to flourish in a multi-party political landscape.

At a meeting of the Maldivian Democratic Party’s national council Sunday, Ibu backed a resolution to pursue the recovery of public funds stolen under President Abdulla Yameen’s watch. He called on the auditor general and anti-corruption watchdog to disclose the overdue findings of their probes into the theft of nearly US$80 million from the Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation, a corruption scandal of unprecedented scale in the country’s history.

  • Before recovering lost MMPRC money, recover money lost in MDP government: president (PSM)
  • I could have ensured more prosperous days if restrictions were not imposed: president (PSM)
  • I could have produced far better results if I wasn’t tackled: President Yameen (Mihaaru)
  • MMPRC money hasn’t been recovered because we don’t know where it is: president (VFP)
  • Politicians shed skin to their advantage: president (Sun)
  • Opposition will know where the money is that Adeeb took: president (Avas)
  • The Maldives isn’t a country on auction: ex-CP Waheed (PSM)
  • President: it’s opposition people who would know where embezzled MMPRC money is! (Mihaaru)
  • PPM in sad state, ideology needs to be defended: President Yameen (Avas)
  • Ibu won’t be able to find MMPRC money: president (Raajje)
  • A person who owes money to the state won’t have any human rights: president (Raajje)
  • President Yameen winning power wasn’t what Maumoon wanted: Adurey (Avas)
  • We need to leave the black pages of the past and move forward with development: Dr Shaheem (PSM)
  • MDP people will also vote for President Yameen: Shaheem (Mihaaru)
  • Ibu and President Yameen can’t be compared: Adurey (Sun)
  • Malé’s roads have become peaceful: Abdul Raheem (VFP)
  • “They’re saying President Yameen will run from presidential race because there’s no new hope to give to the public” (PSM)
  • Guraidhoo people are with President Yameen: Hussain Manik (Mihaaru)
  • If there’s a ruler who will resign when two people call for it the nation will face harm: Shaheem (Sun)
  • Opposition government could even end in 18 days: Shaheem (Avas)
  • Warm welcome to Dr Shaheem from Maabaidhoo where opposition candidate was welcomed by 36 people (PSM)
  • Nation needs to be saved from the claws of the jealous: Dr Shaheem (PSM)
  • “President Nasheed is campaigning against Ibu more than PPM” (Mihaaru)
  • MVR1.5 billion was lost under Nasheed government: Nihan (Sun)
  • PPM’s response to MDP: Will you investigate MDP’s corruption? (Mihaaru)
  • There will be more jobs than youth in next five years: president (Avas)
  • 21 pledges from President Yameen to Maldivians living in Sri Lanka (PSM)

Campaigning in Thaa Guraidhoo, President Yameen claimed the opposition would know where the stolen MMPRC money was hidden. An MDP government would fail to recover either that US$80 million or funds stolen during former president Maumoon Abdul Gayoom’s 30-year reign. This is because individuals implicated in corruption were part of the coalition, he said.

Opposition activities were funded with stolen money, he claimed, alleging further that MVR1.5 billion (US$97 million) was lost during the three-year MDP government.

The inclusion of his former vice president Ahmed Adeeb along with Nasheed among the prisoners whose release was ordered by the Supreme Court shows the link between the two, he suggested.

He questioned why the opposition was allegedly seeking his release since “Adeeb was the most hated by MDP when he was vice president.”

Yameen declared again that Adeeb would not be allowed to travel overseas for medical treatment. “No matter how sick you get, I don’t believe you’d have a human right until the money taken from the state is repaid.”

He went on to accuse the opposition of sabotage and described his ideology as ideal for ensuring public order, stability and development.

At an event Sunday night to welcome new youth members to the ruling party, Yameen insisted that 70,000 jobs have been created under his administration, a figure disputed by the opposition. He promised full employment by the end of a second term, with the expanded airport paving the way for many new resorts.