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Maldives president to resign if fresh dates for presidential polls not agreed on

English.news.cn   2013-10-20 20:24:30            
 • Maldives president said he will resign if candidates cannot agree on a date for presidential elections.
 • Maldives plunged into political disarray after attempts to hold elections were thwarted by police.
 • Former Maldives President Nasheed on Sunday called for arrest of incumbent President Waheed.


MALE, Maldives, Oct. 20 (Xinhua) -- Maldives President Waheed has said he will resign if candidates cannot agree on a date for presidential elections, local media reported on Sunday.

"I will tell them (candidates) I will resign, and then, so will the Vice-President. After that, the responsibility will fall on the Speaker (to assume office as President as per the Maldivian Constitution)," President Waheed said in an interview with local outlet Sun online.

The President said he has remained in the "backseat" but feels that he must now give more direction and help the electoral process.

He added that he would work to make the poll process free, fair and inclusive and try to convince all candidates to agree to go ahead with the polls.

If the candidates cannot agree to having a new president in office by November 11, he will resign, President Waheed said.

Asked if he will stay in office after November 11, in a scenario where the elections have not been held, the President replied, "I am not comfortable to stay on. It would be my preference that there be an elected President. And it would also be my preference that if this is not possible, then there would be some other arrangement made."

Maldives plunged into political disarray after attempts to hold fresh presidential elections were thwarted by police.

Former Maldives President Mohammad Nasheed on Sunday called for the arrest of incumbent President Waheed and appealed for intervention from the international community after the polling was disrupted on Oct. 19.

The vote cancellation sparked protests in Male where Nasheed also staged a sit-in.

He insisted there is no possibility of having free and fair presidential elections as long as President Waheed's government is in power and opined that control should be handed over to the Speaker of Parliament to oversee the installment of a new Head of State.

"Basically I'm calling for his (Waheed's) resignation and for him to face justice. I would hope that the international community would understand this and I also do hope that the Maldives military and police understand what I am talking about. I'm still hoping that Dr. Waheed will gracefully resign today or tomorrow," Nasheed told reporters.

Nasheed won an impressive 45.45 percent of the vote in the first round of presidential elections on September 7 while Waheed got only 5 percent.

The humiliating defeat prompted Waheed to bow out of presidential elections leaving three candidates in the fray.

Police stopped presidential polling that should have taken place on Saturday after the top court annulled the result of the first round due to alleged fraud.


Maldives president arrest demanded by his predecessor after presidential elections disrupted

MALE, Maldives, Oct. 20 (Xinhua) -- Former Maldives President Nasheed has called for the arrest of incumbent President Waheed on Sunday and appealed for greater assistance from the international community after presidential elections was disrupted. Full story

Fresh date for Maldives polls to be announced as protests erupt in capital

MALE, Oct. 19 (Xinhua)-- A fresh date for a third round of polling for the Maldives presidential elections is likely to be announced later on Saturday after the Elections Commission and the government agreed on a new date, an official told local media in the backdrop of protests. Full story

Maldives police defend blocking "unlawful" presidential elections

MALE, Oct. 19 (Xinhua) -- Maldives police defended their move to stop presidential elections that were supposed to take place here on Saturday, insisting that a vote would have been "unlawful" and could have sparked "national instability." Full story

Editor: Lu Hui
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