Maldives EC members deny seeking asylum in Sri Lanka

The Maldives Elections Commission on Tuesday refuted reports indicating that some of its members had sought asylum in neighbouring Sri Lanka, the Avas news website reported.

Most of the elections commission members had fled to Sri Lanka last week amid increasing death threats following allegations of vote rigging in the recently concluded presidential elections.

Several media reports have since surfaced suggesting that the members had sought asylum in Sri Lanka.

However, EC member and spokesperson Ahmed Akram refuted the reports insisting that there were no circumstances for such a move.

“We didn’t come to Sri Lanka to seek asylum. None of our members had sought asylum in any country. It’s a blatant lie,” Akram told AVAS by phone from Sri Lanka.

Elections Commission has announced the official results which confirmed opposition alliance presidential candidate Ibrahim Mohamed Solih as the seventh president of the archipelago with a staggering 58.4 percent of the votes.

Solih had been backed by incumbent president Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom’s main political rivals including the now jailed former presidents Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, Mohamed Nasheed along with Jumhoory Party leader and business tycoon Gasim Ibrahim.

President Yameen urged his supporters to demand the country’s electoral watchdog to answer the numerous allegations of vote rigging that had surfaced after president Yameen had accepted the result last Monday and assured a smooth transition of power.

Ruling Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) meanwhile had vowed nightly protests against the members of Elections Commission which had “robbed” the crunch elections. (Colombo Gazette)

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