The Commonwealth Secretary-General’s Special Envoy to Maldives, Dr Willy Mutunga, has issued a statement following his first visit to the country.
Dr Mutunga was appointed in June 2016 to act on behalf of the Secretary-General in consulting with stakeholders in Maldives. The purpose of his engagement is to encourage the strengthening of a pluralist, multi-party democracy, including steps towards credible and inclusive presidential elections in 2018 and the advancement of reforms to give full effect to the separation of powers.
Speaking in the capital, Male, after concluding his visit on 5 August 2016, he said: “I’ve been warmly welcomed on my first visit to this beautiful country. I met with the President of Maldives HE Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom, a number of government ministers, political leaders, judiciary, police, civil society and international partners.
“My aim on this first visit was to listen, and listen well, to the broad range of views and concerns of all stakeholders. This aim was achieved. My initial consultations will continue in the weeks ahead.”
He further said: “I look forward to returning to Maldives. My aim will be to work with all actors in assisting the development of independent and accountable democratic institutions. These are essential to protecting the fundamental rights and freedoms of the Maldivian people."