President ratifies amendments to Clemency Act, Human Rights Commission Act

President Abdulla Yameen yesterday ratified amendments passed by parliament to the Clemency Act and Human Rights Commission of Maldives (HRCM) Act last month.

Amendments submitted on behalf of the government to the HRCM Act were among a number of bills drafted by the Attorney General’s Office to bring outdated laws in line with the Constitution adopted in August 2008.

The amendments confer powers to the HRCM to either suspend employees of state institutions for two weeks for not complying with the commission’s orders, or to impose a fine of between MVR3,000 (US$195) and MVR25,000 (US$1,621) for non-compliance.

Amendments submitted by Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) MP Ahmed Thoriq to the Clemency Act meanwhile state that convicts would be eligible for presidential pardon or reduction of sentences after serving one-quarter of a jail term. The period is currently one-third of a sentence.

Moreover, persons convicted of drug trafficking involving less than 14 grams would also be eligible for pardon or commuting of sentences.