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Shopkeepers’ Revulsion at ‘Sycophantic’ Poetry About Maumoon [Maldives]:
“He is the hero of the present generation, a character as bright as the sun and his country’s spirit as the children of this country will testify.”

Given the current political climate, one might be forgiven for assuming not many in today’s Maldives would use the above sentence as a description of President Maumoon Gayoom, but ‘poet’ Kopee Mohamed Rasheed thinks differently.

To Kopee the mention of the man Amnesty International has accused of heading a government responsible for torture “refreshes the spirit, and invigorates the heart.” [...]

Shopkeepers are unimpressed. One bookseller told Minivan Radio he felt the poems were “sycophantic”. But book-shop owners said they had no choice but to stock the poetry because they were dependent on Kopee for valuable supplies of textbooks from the Education Ministry, which are popular just before the school term starts. “We are not at all happy” an owner said. [...]
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