Democrats file for registration with 3,500 membership forms

'The Democrats'; a new political party spearheaded by Parliament Speaker Mohamed Nasheed submits form to EC seeking approval to form the party on May 21, 2023. (Sun Photo/Mohamed Shaathiu Abdulla)

The Democrats, a new political party spearheaded by the main ruling Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP)’s leader Mohamed Nasheed, filed for registration with the Elections Commission (EC) on Thursday with 3,560 membership forms.

Over a dozen MPs loyal to Nasheed had left MDP on May 17. They filed an application with the EC to form a new party on May 21.

The party submitted 3,560 membership forms – 560 more than the 3,000 it needs to register as a political party – on Thursday morning.

The application was submitted in the name of West Henveiru MP Hassan Latheef.

Speaking to press outside the EC headquarters in Male’, Hassan Latheef said they had planned on filing for registration with 3,500 forms, but received 60 new forms in the morning.

Hassan Latheef said they asked EC to expedite the registration process.

“We want to note this wasn’t a membership drive. We wanted to get 3,500 forms and submit,” he said.

Hassan Latheef said they had wanted to meet the membership requirement and file for registration as soon as possible.

Other top former MDP officials heading the formation of The Democrats include Deputy Speaker Eva Abdulla and MDP’s former deputy leader Mohamed Shifaz. Once the party is registered, it will become the minority party at the Parliament with 13 MPs.