President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih has called on the main-ruling Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) members to work towards success in order to cross the final stage required for the party to reach its destination.
Speaking at a special rally held at Male' City Carnival area to officially handover MDP's presidential ticket to President Solih, the President, who is seeking a second term in office, said MDP members that voted in the January 28 party primary proved that the party had room for differences of opinion. Hinting at the division between President Solih's supporters and those of his primary contender, the Party's President and Parliament Speaker Mohamed Nasheed, during the primary campaign, President Solih said MDP members disagreed that day to reach the agreement that is today, he said.
The President said that despite the differences of opinion during the primary campaign, every member who voted that day shared in his victory in the primary. He said it was time for everyone to come together to win the upcoming presidential election despite differences of opinion.
"There is only one step forward for the MDP. The whole party must stand as one and win the presidential election. I extend this invitation to the entire MDP and all the members of this party," he said.
During his speech, the President responded to Nasheed and his supporters' claims that the government was not implementing the party's policies. The President said the government is implementing the policy of the MDP and that he was an "MDP man" and had been implementing policies formulated based on MDP policies for the past five years. Therefore, the MDP must win the upcoming presidential election and remain in power if it wishes to do more work, he said.
The President added that he is well aware of the needs of MDP members. His government is developing islands in the "Jazeera" or island-like style that MDP members wish for, and every person should be able to live in their islands in peace as they wish, he said.
"Your objective and need are very clear. You want the Maldives to be a place of peace and stability. A country where the people adhere to the true faith of Islam. You want to move forward with the development being brought to the country. You want everyone to benefit from the development without exclusion," the President said.
The President reiterated at the rally that he was confident of winning the September presidential election in a single round.
While the President has called on MDP members to support him in winning the election, Nasheed has said he would not support President Soloh following his defeat in the MDP primary. He is running a separate political movement within the party under the slogan, "Fikuregge Dhirun", the same slogan he used in his MDP Primary campaign.