The Elections Commission of Maldives (ECM) has announced that it will continue preparatory work to hold the second round of polls as scheduled on September 28. “While awaiting for the Supreme Court verdict on this matter we are continuing the preparation work to hold the election on the previously scheduled date of Saturday, 28th September 2013 so that in case, if the Supreme Court issues a ruling on this matter before the scheduled date of this election we would be able to hold the second round of Presidential Election as previously planned,” it said in a communication.

Noting that the Elections Commission of Maldives was ordered by the Maldivian Supreme Court to postpone the second round of Presidential Elections till it reached a verdict on a case filed by a political party that competed in the first round but did not reach the second round, the ECM said that it was going ahead with preparations.

Hectic parleys continued among political parties and government officials in the wake of the Indian statement on the elections. India wants the polls to go ahead as scheduled.

Meanwhile, the Australian Government, in a statement, noted that “it is important that the results of the democratic process are respected.” It welcomed “the positive findings of international observers, including the Commonwealth Observer Group, on the conduct of the recent first round of Presidential Elections in the Maldives. These elections are an important step in entrenching democracy following the disputed transfer of power there in February 2012.

“Against this background Australia notes the postponement of the second round of Presidential Elections which had been due to occur on Saturday 28 September.

“We call on all parties to maintain calm and order and to work together peacefully and cooperatively while this situation is considered by the Supreme Court. Australia hopes to see an early resumption of the electoral process, with the second round of elections conducted in a manner that is free, fair and transparent, in accordance with the rule of law, and gives free expression to the will of the people of the Maldives,” it said.