Will not contest for Mayor, target is presidency: Umar

The former Minister of Home Affairs Umar Naseer denied the rumours about his interest in contesting for Mayor of the Male’ City.

Some media have reported on Thursday night that Umar has expressed his interest to contest for Mayor of Male’ City.

Denying the report Umar said in an interview given to AVAS, that he has high hopes for the Maldives which cannot be fulfilled by being a Mayor for the Male’ City.

Umar said that the most critical issues of the Maldives, such as drug issues, expatriate issues and India’s influence on the Maldives can only be solved being in the top position of the country.

“The changes that I wish to bring to the Maldives cannot be brought by being a Mayor. The vision I have for the Maldives can only be realised by having the upper hand of the Maldives. I will not travel in any other direction”. Said Umar who has the same policy since 2008.

Umar has said that if a primary is held in PPM then he will contest in the presidential election for 2023 as a PPM candidate.

Umar further said that 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." said Umar

Several people have been expressing interest in contesting for Mayor of the City Council in the local council election slated for April 4. Four members of MDP have announced their interest in candidacy thus far.

The MDP primary scheduled for January 31st is expected to be highly competitive. The current Mayor Shifa Mohamed, Deputy Mayor Shamau Shareef, and MP Ahmed NIyaz who represent Henveiru Southern Constituency have expressed interest in contesting for Male’ City Mayor.

Additionally, former Housing Minister Dr. Mohamed Muizzu from opposing PPM, and former MP Alhan Fahmy has also expressed interest to contest for Mayor.