Reform Parties...

In the name of democracy, reform and good governing, we saw the light of political parties in Maldives.

The political parties of Maldives surely played a very vital role in the drastic political changes that the country recently saw. Now the new constitution is adopted, a new government is in place, and we are faced with an era of multi-party governing system. The question is how the parties are performing.

According to the Elections Commission of Maldives, there are 13 registered political parties in the country. Let me go one by one to share what I see and feel about each.

1. DRP- Still holds the most populous party in the nation. The DRP is getting settled with the reality of losing the presidential election in the second round. They did show a good performance in the Parliamentary election with largest number of seat won by a single party. DRP as an opposition is very successful in pulling the MDP government back to knees more often than MDP could afford to.

However, DRP seems to be too much interested in power at times. As a result the wrong message about some sensitive issues like economic problems is given. This could have a wrong impact and could lose some educated and experienced members and public confidence as a result. The DRP headed by Maumoon is an issue many criticize. The reality is that DRP has its bonds and cooperation solely on the foundation of Maumoon. A day without Maumoon in leadership will be a day DRP divides into factions. They cannot afford this. At the same time DRP, I believe cannot take Maumoon as her next presidential candidate which will again prove wrong. DRP needs a reform. They need to hold their bond and at the same time bring about a change to the leadership, with a strong person, yet in a way that Maumoon still is in picture. As for a sustainable party, DRP needs to make it a party that could be strongly held regardless of presence or absence of Maumoon. DRP need to reform yet not reshape into more parties.

2. MDP- The government party. MDP is not a party that stands by its organizational structure or the leadership. Indeed it is a party that stands because her members want it that way. The way MDP bends the parliament as they wish very often is a strong point they have regardless of been the minority party. MDP also has proved they don’t dare to take the necessary actions to bring economy and society back to track even with the risk of losing the popularity of party.

However, MDP though calls for the reform of DRP is in more needs to reform. I think MDP yet didn’t learn to be a ruling party. It seems it’s too hard for MDP to do her party business and government business at once. MDP is also having trouble showing to her members, the line that cuts them and separates between party and government. MDP over the period after taking the government has increased membership level yet still, fails to do enough to keep existing members. The leadership of MDP needs to do their job to make life of government easy. Had the leadership succeeded in persuading her members that only one MDP member should run for every seat and had they ensured that credible people competes, the difficulties they see today will not be faced. MDP needs to reform them. The failure could end up in even bitter results in council elections.

3. Adhaalath- Islamic ministry is doing a good job. Adhaalath has played a noticeable role to bring awareness about religious issues in country. Also, they have proved quiet successful in coping with MDP.

However, Adhaalath has more of changed itself from a party to a ministry. The activities of party are taken as the activities of Islamic ministry. Once I remember Adhaalath "showing yellow card" at parties but today they are too busy with ministry. Adhaalth needs to keep its identity, if not we may one day see a department in Maldives rather than a ministry that is named Adhaalth or justice and the story of the Adhaalath party could be named as history. Moreover, the President of Adhaalath is the State Home Minster, member of Presidential commission. Wonder why Adhaalath blamed Maumoon for been DRP leader, president and defense minister at once. Adaalath too needs a reform.

4. IDP- To tell truth, when the name hit my ear, Umar comes to mind. Now that he joined DRP the future of party is yet to be decided party. I don’t know if the party is yet dissolved or not. As a person I think Umar would have been better off to wait, yet as a party, he may be right that small parties are out of picture. If the party is not dissolved, it’s high time they pack well and start over the journey from zero.

5- PA - Yameen and his supporters. Now that Yameen announced his desire to run for presidential election, PA needs to do a lot to change the way people looks at the party. The performance of PA in parliament as the member of opposition is good enough. Yet, if PA is to win any elections PA must need the backing of "brother" party; DRP. PA could stand on its own if she improves relation with public. If not, PA could be only YA (Yamin A).

6- GP- Gaumee party is very active these days and friendly with media as well. Unlike the beginnig with 3 "Docs", party is becoming more customised, and friendly. This could be a good sign, yet in pariment with the 2 available seats, a better role could be palyed.

7. 8. 9.10- SLP. JP. Iththihaadh. MNC- Four parties that seem silent than ever before after the elections. SLP and Ithithihaadh I guess are happy with the cabinet seats. But that will not be the case always. JP represented by Gasim has lost her credibility to raise voice in Maldivian political stage. MNC? I know nothing more than Naeem and the flower they have!!! All needs to be more active or stop taking the money from budget.

11. 12. 13. - MSDP. LP. PP- Let me put like this. Each of these parties is a one man show game. And needs extreme reform or needs to be dissolved.

Over all, the parties need to stop useless and unproductive arguments and start working in the best interest of nation. If not failure could be more near than far.