Former Home Minister Umar Naseer has stated that he will contest for the 2023 presidential elections on a Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) ticket if the party holds a primary.
Speaking on local channel 'CNM TV', Umar said he is one of the three founding members of PPM, and that he worked alongside former presidents Maumoon Abdul Gayyoom and Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayyoom to establish the party. The party was first founded in his office, and the party charters were written within the walls of his office, said Umar.
Therefore, if the party were to open its doors to its leadership, he will try his best to become elected, said Umar. However, as long as the doors remain closed, he will not attempt to force his way in, said Umar. While he hopes to be able to reach the highest leadership position of the party, he has his interests set on contesting for the presidential election on a party ticket, said the former home minister.
"I will contest in 2023 [presidential elections], and I will succeed. My hope is for PPM to open doors to its leadership and to contest [in the presidential election] through PPM."
Umar further said even if he pursues a party ticket, the current leader of PPM, President Yameen does not have to sideline himself. He added that he respects the party's decision to field President Yameen in the 2023 elections, and if he does not get the opportunity to contest through PPM, he will contest in the election as an independent candidate.
"In the instance that I do not receive a PPM ticket I may establish my own political party in the four years that remain [ahead of the election]. Many people have approached me to establish a political party. I haven't pursued it yet as I have not come to terms with the idea just yet," said Umar.