People reported waiting up to six hours to cast their vote in the Maldives presidential election Sunday, as long lines persisted at polling stations more than halfway through the day. There are about 262,000 eligible voters. Elections Commission member Ahmed Akram told the Maldives Independent that turnout had reached 38 percent by noon. Polls close in less than an hour, but queues stretched outside most schools where polling stations were set up in the capital. In Kuala Lumpur people fainted while waiting, leaving others in the queue to manage the line and arrange for drinking water. Queues were said to extend from the 10th floor to the ground floor. There are almost 1,900 people registered to vote in Kuala Lumpur, but only one ballot box.
In Colombo, where there are two ballot boxes for around 2,800 voters, the former EC head Fuwad Thowfeek told the Maldives Independent there was no organisation.
“It was overcrowded, uncomfortable. I saw people pushing. I am not very good at pushing. So after waiting for an hour, we decided to return later,” he said.