EC chairman: Will seek additional funds for 2023 presidential elections

Elections Commission chairman Fuad Thaufeeq. (Sun Photo/Fayaz Moosa)

The Elections Commission (EC) will seek additional funds as the funds allocated in the 2023 state budget for the presidential elections will be insufficient if the elections go to a second round, states the commission’s chairman Fuad Thaufeeq.

EC was allocated MVR 95 million for the 2023 presidential elections, which is lower than the MVR 120 million the commission had requested.

Fuad told Sun that though the funds allocated will ensure the smooth management of one round of elections, it will cause difficulties if a second round is required.

He said that the commission believes it highly likely the elections will go to a second round if more than two candidates contend.

He said the commission will therefore seek additional funds.

“I believe there will be difficulties but the Finance Ministry can solve it. We can find a way by discussing with the Finance Ministry or even the President himself or the relevant parliamentary committee,” he said.

Fuad said that many of the equipment the commission had used in previous elections were outdated or damaged, and needs to be replaced.

The political parties that have announced plans to contend in the elections include the main ruling Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP), main opposition Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM), Maldives Development Alliance (MDA), and Maldives National Party (MNP).

The election is expected to be held in September. However, the EC has yet to announce a specific date.