Jumhooree Party leader Qasim Ibrahim , recently spoke at a party conference to discuss the upcoming presidential election. As a key player in Maldives politics, Qasim raised concerns about both the ruling Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) and the opposition Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM).
During his speech, Qasim reflected on the injustices he experienced under the previous administration of former President Abdulla Yameen. He described how difficult it was to hold a conference like the one he was speaking at during that time, as many opposition leaders were either in jail or in exile.
Qasim himself was unlawfully sentenced in absentia to three years of imprisonment on bribery charges. He was allowed to leave for medical treatment in Singapore before eventually moving to Germany under political asylum. His sentence was overturned by the Supreme Court in 2018.
Despite his difficult experiences, Qasim emphasized that he was not spiteful or vindictive. He also spoke about the challenges faced by coalition parties like the Jumhooree Party, who he said often don’t receive credit for their contributions to positive policy changes. He noted that there are several competent Jumhooree Party members leading state-owned enterprises, as well as ministers and other officials who are making important contributions to the current administration.
The conference was attended by prominent politicians from various parties, as well as foreign dignitaries. In addition to discussing the presidential election, attendees voted on amendments to party regulations and elected individuals to important roles within the party.
Qasim’s speech highlights the challenges faced by opposition parties in the Maldives, as well as the need for coalition partners to receive credit for their contributions to positive policy changes. It also serves as a reminder of the injustices that some individuals have faced under previous administrations, and the importance of upholding the rule of law and protecting individuals’ constitutional rights.