'Ticks must be given for all categories for vote to be considered as valid'

Main-ruling Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) has stated that only votes that have ticks in all categories on the ballot paper will be considered as valid votes in their upcoming primary ahead of the local council election.

MDP said votes will be taken for four main categories in the party primary slated for January 31; mayors of cities and presidents of atoll councils, presidents of island councils, island council members, and seats assigned specially for women on the island councils.

When voting for any of these categories, a choice must be made regarding the remaining categories for the ballot to be considered as valid, said MDP.

According to the voters' list publicized by MDP, over 93.139 members are eligible to vote in the primary. However, it is probable that this number may change based on the complaints received regarding the voters' list.

The voters' list shows 13108 on the Male' City voters' list while 12096 names are on the voter list of Addu City. 3959 people are on Fuvahmulah City voters' list and 1228 people are eligible for voting in newly declared city, Kulhudhuffushi.

While 1246 MDP members will be contesting in the party primary, 983 officials will be elected in the upcoming local council election scheduled for April 4. 33% of seats have been reserved for women under new amendments to the Decentralization Act, therefore, a minimum of 370 women will be elected to councils. A total of 930 members will be elected to Women Development Committees on the same day.