Talks between Pres Solih and Qasim still ongoing 14 hours later

Coalition talks between President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih and Jumhooree Party leader Qasim Ibrahim are still ongoing.

Qasim contested the first round of the presidential election on September 9 but failed to advance to the second round. He received 5,460 votes, placing him fifth among eight candidates. Meanwhile, the PPM-PNC candidate, Dr. Mohamed Muizzu, emerged as the frontrunner with 46 percent of the votes, and President Solih secured second place with 39 percent of the votes. With no candidate reaching the required 50 percent majority for a decisive victory, a second round of voting has been confirmed, emphasizing the need for both parties to form alliances with other parties to ensure victory in the final round.

President Solih arrived in Maamigili on Wednesday around 4.45 pm for the ongoing talks, which are being held at Qasim's Sun Island Resort. These discussions have continued for approximately 14 hours.

According to information from senior Jumhooree Party members, most of the discussions occur behind closed doors between President Solih and Qasim. If any other member from Qasim's side participates in the talks, it is reported to be former Tourism Minister Ali Waheed.

Several senior JP leaders are currently on Sun Island as talks continue between President Solih and Qasim, including Deputy Leader Ameen Ibrahim, Kendhoo MP Ali Hussain, and Advisor Iruthisham Adam.

The President's delegation includes running mate Mohamed Aslam, Foreign Minister Abdullah Shahid, and Chief of Staff of the President's Office, and former Vice President of the Adalath Party, Ali Zahir.

The Jumhooree Party is expected to make decisions regarding its coalition partners for the second round of the presidential election following discussions with President Solih.

As of now, no party has agreed to collaborate with the President in the second round of the presidential election. However, the Maldives National Party (MNP) has agreed to work with Muizzu.