Maldivian govt seeks MDP support to end political impasse
Last Updated: Monday, March 05, 2012, 21:15
Colombo: A top Maldivian minister on Monday appealed to ousted president Mohamed Nasheed to allow the parliament to function to end the political deadlock in the country.

The Maldivian government led by President Mohamed Waheed seeks the support of the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) so as to allow the parliament to function even as an all-party talks to failed to end a political stalemate over an early election date.

"If President Nasheed is sincere about political reforms, about an early election, his party can't block parliament process," Youth Minister Mohamed Shareef Mundhu told reporters in Colombo.

The MDP disrupted last Thursday's opening of parliament and prevented the president from deliver his address last week.

MDP lawmakers blocked the entry to parliament and had removed the speaker's chair from the chamber.

"The constitution clearly states the president must first address parliament, state his policy address. Then parliament can proceed with necessary laws to allow early elections," Shareef said.

Nasheed, who has claimed he was ousted as a result of a coup, has vowed not to allow the parliament to function unless an early presidential elections date is set.

The new government's spokesman Abbas Adil Riza said elections time frame will be decided by all-party talks.

"Before we fix election dates, we need to change the constitution, push through judicial reforms and strengthen independent institutions. We have to follow the constitutional process," Riza said.

Nasheed's resignation on February 7 came after weeks of protests following Nasheed's decision to jail a judge.

He has accused the former president Maumoon Gayoom's supporters of engineering his downfall.

An all party talks to take forward an India-brokered deal has failed to end the deadlock. Under an India-brokered deal, the Waheed government had agreed to hold an early election in line with Nasheed's demand.

Major parties have withdrawn their representatives after the MDP lawmakers disrupted parliament and prevented the president from deliver his address last week.

MDP leaders have now threatened to to paralyse the functioning of the government unless it gives a date for the presidential elections.


First Published: Monday, March 05, 2012, 20:37

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