Parliament will invite former President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom to the inauguration of President-elect Mohamed Muizzu, it has been confirmed. The Director of Communications of Parliament, Hassan Ziyau, has assured that the invitations for the ceremony will be sent out by the end of Monday.

The inauguration of the incoming president is scheduled for 17 November at Republic Square. Yameen, who leads the Progressive-Congress Coalition, consisting of the Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) and the People’s National Congress (PNC), is being invited amidst indications of internal rifts within the coalition. These conflicts reportedly stem from disagreements over the proposed appointments in the upcoming Muizzu administration.

Yameen, who is serving an 11-year prison sentence for money laundering and bribery conviction, currently remains under house arrest in Malé. He was transferred to house arrest on 1 October following Muizzu’s election victory. On 28 October, the Maldives Correctional Services (MCS) further relaxed Yameen’s house arrest on medical grounds, which allowed him greater freedom within Malé City.

Yameen has since utilised this opportunity to hold several political gatherings with his party members, leading to warnings from MCS that his political activities could result in the revocation of his house arrest privileges, which were granted for medical reasons under an agreement with Yameen.

The terms of the agreement allow Yameen to conduct meetings, MCS confirmed to the Maldives Republic. However, in response to Parliament’s inquiry regarding Yameen’s potential attendance at the inauguration ceremony, MCS has reportedly clarified that Yameen will not be granted permission to attend such ceremonies and events.

The inauguration ceremony will be held at Republic Square, weather permitting, or at the Parliament building otherwise. Several heads of state and government have also been invited, but the authorities have yet to confirm the identities and attendance of these officials.

The Parliament Secretariat had confirmed that 3,500 invitations would be sent out for the inauguration ceremony, while the Office of the President-elect is working to allow 1,000 members of the public to attend. All arrangements for the ceremony, which is considered a parliamentary sitting, are being handled by Parliament, which has contracted the Sifainge Welfare Company Pte Ltd (SIWEC) for the task.

The project, which includes arranging decorations and food and beverages, was contracted for MVR 22.9 million. The inauguration ceremony of the incumbent President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih, which was held at the National Stadium, cost the state MVR 17 million.