Politics in the Maldives has always been topsy-turvy, with the opposition doing whatever they can, with which ever means they can, to stop the government from functioning. Recent history has shown that they will not hesitate to even create public chaos, in order to get a “good photograph” or even a newspaper headline.
One such case was the 24th of last July, a day in which the opposition planned to topple the government. There were open calls by the opposition leaders for the public to gather in Male’ the capital that day. It was officially announced that the opposition will forcefully take over the parliament and will cast a vote to oust the speaker, even though officially the parliament was not in session. It was rumored, that the opposition tried to get Maldives National Defense Force and the Police to come out in support of such an attempt, perhaps hoping that this will then lead to a successful coup to topple the government.
However, The Government of President Yameen is quite popular among the residents, and hence the call for the people to gather to Male’ went unanswered and largely ignored. Frustrated the opposition did the only thing they knew how to do, create violence and mayhem. They gathered and marched towards the parliament clinging to the false hope that the MNDF and Police will be on their side.
Alas, they were proven wrong. The MNDF, and Police, who were in charge of the security of the Parliament, as is stipulated by law, were steadfast in their legal obligations towards the Nation, Its elected President and the people. They did not allow the opposition to march in to the Parliament.
When faced with the situation where all their plans were falling to pieces right in front of them, the opposition had to restore for the only thing they knew how to do well, create violence and look for the photo opportunities and headlines.
They forcefully broke through the Police barricades and climbed over the walls of the Parliament house, and entered the Parliament building. To restore order, police were required to forcefully remove those who entered the parliament building. It is noteworthy, that those who did scale the walls of the Parliament include even nonmembers, against whom, investigations are ongoing at the moment.
The 24th of July was a bitter failure for the opposition and their plans and hopes, while event proved it to be a clear victory for President Yameen and his government, showing that he had the support of the general public and the support of MNDF and the Police, throughout their rank and files.