Case filed seeking re-vote on opposition running mate pick

A case has been filed at the Maldives Civil Court challenging the validity of the opposition Jumhoory Party (JP) council vote to pick the opposition alliance running mate for the upcoming presidential elections.

JP picked Kaashidhoo lawmaker Faisal Naseem as the opposition alliance running mate who narrowly won the nomination by a solitary vote.

Under the opposition parties' alliance agreement, JP would get to nominate the running mate to stand for the upcoming presidential elections alongside main opposition Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) nominated presidential candidate Ibrahim Mohamed Solih.

Two senior party lawmakers and two of its deputy leaders had officially sought the nomination which was put to a secret vote at the 41 member JP council sit-down on Friday.

It was tightly run race between the two lawmakers MP Ali Hussain and MP Faisal Naseem as the latter edged the elections by a single vote. Kendhoo lawmaker Ali Hussain received 14 votes while the Kaashidhoo MP Faisal Naseem shaded the elections with 15 in favour.

The case filed by a party activist claimed that the only vote "unfairly" voided in the elections was cast for Ali Hussain which should have tied the vote on 15 each.

The case urged the court to order JP to hold a second round of voting between the two lawmakers.

Ali Hussain meanwhile had accepted the outcome of the tightly contested elections and pledged support to the opposition campaign.