Shareef: Allowing government a majority in councils will lead to autocracy

PNC deputy leader Adam Shareef Umar. (File Photo/Sun/Fayaz Moosa)

Deputy Leader of People’s National Congress (PNC), Adam Shareef Umar, on Saturday, warned that allowing the government to gain a majority in local councils would lead to autocratic rule in Maldives.

Shareef, who represents the Maduvvari constituency at the Maldivian Parliament, made the comment in a tweet, in response to remarks by President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih earlier this Saturday that he expected a sweeping victory for ruling Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) in the upcoming Local Council Elections.

Shareef, in his tweet, accused the government of attempts to consolidate the three branches of the State.

“The people are witness to the failure to deliver numerous pledges, declare minimum wage, extension of employment probation period, halt of several subjects, and the consolidation of the three powers,” said Shareef. “If the government were given the LC [Local Council], it would pave the path for autocratic rule.”

Taking part in the MDP event to put up posters for its elections campaign this morning, President Solih said he expected the party’s performance in the upcoming local council elections to surpass its historical win in the 2019 parliamentary elections when it won 65 seats, guaranteeing the party a supermajority at the Parliament.

President Solih said voters remained “on the same track” they had been in the days leading up to the last parliamentary elections.

“I therefore expect a far greater election victory than that,” he said.

Local Council Elections is scheduled to take place on April 4 and will see Maldives elect 982 councilors from among an estimated 6,000 candidates.