Alwaght- Aina Gamzatova, a prominent Muslim journalist, submit her bid for Russia's 2018 presidential elections.
According to Russia Today, Gamzatova who is a successful the head of Russia's largest Muslim media holding and is the wife and adviser of chief mufti of Dagestan, submitted her registration papers to the Central Elections Committee on Monday. The 46-year-old woman also runs several charity organizations.
Running as an independent contender without the backing of a party means that Gamzatova still has to collect and submit as many as 300,000 signatures from supporters from all Russian regions. Candidates representing parliamentary parties do not have to collect any signatures, while those backed by parties not represented in the Russian parliament have to garner the support of 100,000 signatories.
Russia’s first female Muslim presidential candidate has not yet unveiled a detailed election program, sticking to broad appeals for national unity and cohesion. She has, however, already gained some support from Russian Muslims.
The Russian presidential election is scheduled for March 18. So far, Vladimir Zhirinovsky, the veteran leader of the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia (LDPR), is the only fully-fledged candidate. Current Russian President Vladimir Putin will run for a new term as an independent, even though his election bid has been endorsed by several parties, including the parliamentary majority United Russia party and the leftist parliamentary opposition Fair Russia party.
According to the head of the Central Elections Commission, Ella Pamfilova, 21 Russian political parties and 30 independent politicians and activists have declared their intention to run in the 2018 election.