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Maldives EC calls off presidential polls after police intervention

Police prevented the EC from going ahead with the controversy-ridden re-vote at the last minute.

Written by Press Trust Of India | Male |
October 19, 2013 10:44:18 am

Maldives Election Commission on Saturday called off fresh presidential polls after the police prevented it from going ahead with the controversy-ridden re-vote at the last minute.

“As we continued with (preparation for) voting,the Maldives Police Services have said no document relating to the election can leave the commission’s offices,stopping the election,” said a statement issued by the Election Commission.

“When we are informed of the next date for the election,we will announce the election,” the statement added. Earlier,the commission had announced that the vote would go ahead as planned despite 11th-hour court challenges by two candidates.

Progressive Party of Maldives candidate Abdulla Yameen and Jumhooree Party’s Gasim Ibrahim had demanded fingerprint verification of the finalised voter roll,with police refusing to support the poll without the candidates’ signatures.

The Supreme Court had annulled results of the first round of polling on September 7 and ordered fresh polls after hearing a petition on alleged electoral fraud filed by third placed candidate Ibrahim. The apex court had ordered authorities to hold a fresh round of presidential polls before October 20.

In that balloting,former president Mohamed Nasheed,46,got 45.45 per cent votes. However,a candidate needs to cross the 50 per cent mark for the poll process to be complete.

The political scene in Maldives has been in a state of flux since February 2012 when Nasheed,the country’s first democratically elected President,was forced to resign in duress. He was succeeded by Vice-President Waheed.

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