President Mohamed Waheed Hassan Manik has said today that he will only participate in the All Party Road-Map Talks once the harassment of government officials and employees stop.
Speaking with reporters prior to leaving for Mecca to attend the summit of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference, President Waheed in reply to a question asked by Haveeru said that the government had clearly stated that it will only participate in negotiations once a calmer environment is established.
“I am ready to join the talks. But the unrest on the roads and the harassment of government officials and employees has got to stop. Once it stops I’ll join the talks,” he said.
When asked if he believed that the halting of the Maldivian Democratic Party’s (MDP) Direct Action Campaign has lent a calmer atmosphere to the recommencing of the All Party Road-Map Talks President Waheed said that “compared to earlier the situation has considerably simmered down,” and he thanked the leaders of MDP for doing so.
“But still, harassing government officials and employees have not come to a complete halt. So I believe that will eventually stop too. My hope is to recommence the talks as soon as possible,” he said.
The President revealed that he has been in continuous dialogue with mediator of the All Party Road-Map Talks Ahmed Mujuthaba and expressed hope that once Mujthaba returned from his vacation talks can resume.
“I have said that if matters progress peacefully I will join the negotiations and I have been assured that either leaders or deputy leaders from other political parties will also join the discussions,” he explained.
He also added that he has appointed a representative on his behalf to the Parliament on the request of the Speaker of Parliament Abdulla Shahid to meet with a team of leaders from the Parliament and said that he hoped the discussion designed to pave the way for the reconvening of the Parliament will be held within this week.
The President had appointed Vice President Mohamed Waheedeen as his representative to the Parliament however the government is currently reconsidering the decision following the Vice President being harassed at Hulhumale allegedly by supporters of the opposition during a visit to inaugurate a futsal field.