Campaign offices of the Maldivian Democratic Party’s candidate for the Galolhu South constituency in the capital were vandalised in the early hours of Friday.
“After stealing billboards, destroying banners and sending constant death threats tonight, they have finally attacked our campaign office in Galolhu Dhekunu,” Mickail Naseem tweeted.
“This happened while we were with the police showing them the damaged banners on Rehen’dhi Hin’gun.”
A group of people who took down his banners also threatened campaign workers, Mickail alleged. In a separate incident, an eight-foot canvass put up by a supporter on his home wall was stolen twice, the MDP’s youth wing leader said.
“The government has changed but an environment to campaign freely has still not been assured,” he added.
Mickail’s rivals in the April 6 polls are Dhaandhoo MP Ahmed Assad from the opposition Progressive Party of Maldives, former police commissioner Abdulla Nawaz from the Jumhooree Party, and Aminath Nadira from the Maumoon Reform Movement, as well as independents Ahmed Azim and Mirfath Ismail Shafeeq.
In a statement Saturday, the MDP strongly condemned the death threats and vandalism. The ruling party expressed surprise with the failure of other candidates and parties to condemn the incidents.
The cases have been reported to police, it added.
Yesterday MDP Galolhu Dhekunu candidate @MickailNaseem 's jagahas were vandalized & he was given death threats. Last night MDP Chairperson Uz @HassanLatheef 's billboard on H. Shady Side were stolen. Urge @PoliceMv to look into these worrying incidents and take prompt action pic.twitter.com/3StJbbMrsP
— Afshan Latheef 🎈 (@AfshanLatheef) March 9, 2019
Perpetrators of such violence were given absolute impunity over the last 5 years. That has to stop; this violence must be investigated and action taken. Such acts mar the entire electoral, democratic process.
— Eva Abdulla 🎈❓ (@evattey) March 8, 2019