Maldives presidential poll to be held September 23

The Maldives presidential poll will be held on September 23, the chair of the Elections Commission said late Thursday, declaring this year’s ballot would be the most transparent ever. Ahmed Shareef said observers would be allowed to monitor the vote and that electoral representatives from eight countries, the European Union and Organisation of Islamic Cooperation would be invited. “Unlike previous elections this one is going to be fully trusted by the people. We will not withhold any information other than the information that has to be kept secret legally,” he said. This year’s poll is being held amid fierce criticism of civil and political rights abuses by President Abdulla Yameen’s government, with opposition leaders either in exile or behind bars and a crackdown on the media and activists........................

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