Ex-pres to gift party tickets to loyalists

Former president Abdull Yameen Abdul Gayoom is set to gift party tickets for the upcoming parliamentary elections to his loyalists later Monday.

AVAS understands that the decision to gift tickets to members loyal to Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) during a top level sit-down late last month.

An event has been reportedly planned to present PPM tickets to its candidates who would be contesting in the parliamentary elections in March next year.

Yameen would reportedly make his first public appearance since his term ended last month during the event.

The move comes weeks after PPM won the challenge against the Election Commission's refusal to endorse the party's congress which elected former president Yameen as the new party leader.

PPM had claimed that president Yameen who suffered a rather embarrassing defeat to the opposition alliance candidate Ibrahim Mohamed Solih in September's presidential elections was voted in as the new leader unanimously by congress members.

However, the members of the Elections Commission had refused to endorse the congress citing procedural violations.

The first appellate court ruled in favour of PPM and ordered the elections commission to recognize the leadership elected during the congress within 24 hours.

The development would came as a major boost for Yameen who is facing a battle to hold onto the party in his bid to remain as the country's new opposition leader.