The Progressive Congress coalition, a coalition between the Progressive Party of the Maldives (PPM) and the People’s National Congress (PNC), has announced 20 January 2024 as the date for the collective’s primary to determine candidates for the 2024 parliamentary elections. Interested members can apply for the party ticket between 20 and 32 December, the coalition said.

“PPM and PNC will contest the upcoming parliamentary elections as a coalition,” the party confirmed in a statement.

Though the incoming President Mohamed Muizzu-led PNC won the recent Presidential Election, in significant part due to a robust partnership with PPM, there has been recent speculation and signs of deep divisions between the two parties, observers say.

Meanwhile, former president Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom, in his first formal gathering since being moved to house arrest, cautioned against inter-party defections.

“No party member should fill out forms for another party or PNC,” Yameen advised, underlining that both PPM and PNC were parties of the “same ideology” while also going on to advocate for the strengthening of PPM in the next five years.

At the same time, PNC is currently working to increase membership throughout the country, an indicator that the coalition primary has the potential to heat up as 20 January draws near.