No vote-rigging in MDP primary: Pres Solih

There will be no vote rigging in the MDP presidential primary, the party's leader and primary candidate, President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih, has said.

Speaking to reporters after casting his vote at the Lhaviyani atoll polling station in Iskandhar School, Male', President Solih said there would be no election fraud in the primary, adding that no electoral fraud had ever occurred in the party's previous elections.

"I don't believe there is any electoral fraud going on. The MDP does not rig elections," he said.

The President further said he hoped all party members would work together after the election results.

President Solih expressed confidence that he would win the election by a large margin -- with a double-digit percentage difference. After winning the primary, he aims to win support from all constituencies for the September presidential election, he said. He believes that the MDP will win the presidential election if this "winning formula" is implemented.

"We will need the support of health professionals and educators. In addition, [we have to identify] the political parties' thinking and ideology, and we need to work to get that support," he said.

The primary is the first primary in the Maldives' history where a sitting president is contesting seeking re-election. President Solih is contesting against Parliament Speaker and MDP's President, Mohamed Nasheed, in Saturday's primary. Voting will conclude at 5:00 pm, and the results are expected to come in before 9:00 pm.