Solih gets over 58 % of the popular vote
AMN / MALE
Opposition leader Ibrahim Mohamed Solih has won the Maldives’ presidential elections. Results released by the Elections Commission early morning showed Solih has secured 58.3 per cent of the popular vote.
Celebrations broke out across the country with opposition supporters carrying yellow flags of Solih’s Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) and dancing on the streets. There is no response from President Abdulla Yameen after the results were announced.
The opposition claim of victory has come after it had expressed fears of fraud during the elections. Election commission has said that official results will be declared by Saturday.
Solih declared victory early on Monday and called upon Yameen to concede defeat. He urged Yameen to begin a smooth transition of power and release jailed opposition leaders. His supporters were jubilant, filling the streets of the capital city of Male.
Yameen is yet to respond, but he could challenge the result.
Solih, 54, is backed by exiled former President Mohamed Nasheed, who lost to Yameen 5 years ago.
During the campaign, Solih accused Yameen of burdening Maldivians with heavy debts from China.
Solih is expected to promote an India-first policy regarding the economy and national security.
President Yameen or his team has not accepted defeat so far and all eyes will be on him for his remarks. President Yameen has systematically tried to repress opposition challenge during past years and neglected international opinion.
He had declared emergency and arrested Supreme Court judges in February who ruled to release opposition leaders including former President Moahmmed Nasheed.
India welcomes successful completion of polls in Maldives
India has welcomed the successful completion of poll process in the Maldives.
In a statement, External Affairs Ministry said in New Delhi that India congratulates Ibrahim Mohamed Solih on his victory.
India said, the election marks not only the triumph of democratic forces in the Maldives, but also reflects the firm commitment to the values of democracy and the rule of law.
In keeping with the ‘Neighbourhood First’ Policy, India looks forward to working closely with the Maldives in further deepening our partnership.