The Supreme Court has registered a case filed by former President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom, the opposition PPM’s presidential candidate, seeking to overturn the Elections Commission’s rejection of his candidacy for the upcoming presidential election. The case was registered within hours of being filed, as confirmed by Yameen’s running mate and general counsel, Dr. Mohamed Jameel Ahmed.

The EC rejected Yameen’s candidacy on Tuesday, citing Article 109(f) of the Constitution as the basis for its decision. According to the constitutional provision, a presidential candidate should not have been convicted of a criminal offence and sentenced to a term of more than twelve months, unless a period of three years has elapsed since their release or pardon for the offence in question.

Yameen, who is currently serving an 11-year prison sentence for charges of bribery and money laundering, failed to meet the eligibility criteria set forth in the constitution, prompting the EC’s decision to reject his candidacy.

Political analysts speculate that the Supreme Court’s ruling, expected within 48 hours as mandated by the constitution, could reshape the electoral dynamics and potentially alter the list of presidential candidates.

With Yameen’s candidacy being rejected, the PPM’s coalition partner, the People’s National Congress (PNC), is currently mulling over fielding an alternative candidate. PNC says the final decision on the candidate selection rests with Yameen.

The deadline for filing nominations for the upcoming presidential elections expires on Monday, 7 August.