Civil Court dismisses ruling of own watchdog body against Chief Judge Abdulla Mohamed

The Civil Court today dismissed a decision by its own watchdog body, the Judicial Service Commission (JSC), to take action against Chief Judge of the Criminal Court Abdullah Mohamed for violating the Judge’s Code of Conduct.

An investigation into a complaint of ethical misconduct against Judge Abdulla was completed by a JSC special committee which recommended in the final report to the commission that action be taken against the Judge for violating the Judge’s Code of Conduct – specifically, by making a politically biased statement in an interview with DhiTV.

However, during the period given to Judge Abdulla to respond to the report, he instead obtained a Civil Court injunction against his further investigation by the judicial watchdog.

The JSC appealed the injunction on January 24 of this year, claiming that the Civil Court had disregarded the commission’s constitutional mandate which allowed it to take action against judges, and argued that the court did not have the jurisdiction to overrule a decision of its own watchdog body.

But the appeal was rejected, concluding that the commission had not provided the court “any substantial reason to terminate the injunction and that the High court cannot make a decision on the case while the case is pending at a lower court.

As the final verdict on the case came out today, the Civil Court overruled the the decision stating that Judge Abdulla was not given an opportunity to respond to the allegations during the investigation.

According to the decision, providing a chance to submit any complaints after the investigation is completed cannot be deemed as an opportunity for the Judge to present his defence.

Like all other state institutions the JSC must also be held accountable in front of the law, the court noted, addding that party who believes to have suffered damages due to a decision by the commission have the right to litigate  matter to protect his rights.

Furthermore the Civil Court concluded that action cannot be taken against the Abdullah under the Judge’s Code of Conduct, because the said violation predates the regulation.

Charges against the Judge

Apart from the ethical misconduct complaint, the JSC revealed that a total of 11 complaints have been submitted to the commission against Judge Abdulla Mohamed, among which are serious allegations of corruption and abuse of authority.

The first complaints against Abdulla Mohamed were filed in July 2005 by then Attorney General Dr Hassan Saeed – now Dr Waheed’s political advisor – and included allegations of misogyny, sexual deviancy, and throwing out an assault case despite the confession of the accused.

Among the allegations in Dr Saeed’s letter was one that Judge Abdulla had requested an underage victim of sexual abuse reenact her abuse for the court, in the presence of the perpetrator.

In 2009, those documents were sent to the JSC, which was requested to launch an investigation into the outstanding complaints as well as alleged obstruction of “high-profile corruption investigations”.

The JSC decided not to proceed with the investigation on July 30, 2009.

Former President’s member on the JSC and whistleblower Aishath Velezinee for several years contended that Abdulla Mohamed was a central, controlling “father figure” in the lower courts, answerable to former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom and a key figure responsible for scuttling the independence of the judiciary under the new constitution.

Central figure in Nasheed’s downfall

Abdulla Mohamed was also a central figure in the downfall of former President Mohamed Nasheed, following the military’s detention of the judge after the government accused him of political bias, obstructing police, stalling cases, links with organised crime and “taking the entire criminal justice system in his fist” to protect key figures of the former dictatorship from human rights violations and corruption cases.

Judge Abdulla’s arrest sparked three weeks of anti-government protests starting in January, while the government appealed for assistance from the Commonwealth and UN to reform the judiciary.

As protests escalated, elements of the police and military mutinied on February 7, alleging Nasheed’s orders to arrest the judge were unlawful. A Commonwealth legal delegation had landed in the capital only days earlier.

Nasheed publicly resigned the same day, but later said he was forced to do so “under duress” in a coup d’état. Nasheed’s Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) has taken to the streets in recent months calling for an early election.

Judge Abdulla was released on the evening of February 7, and the Criminal Court swiftly issued a warrant for Nasheed’s arrest. Police did not act on the warrant, after international concern quickly mounted.


13 thoughts on “Civil Court dismisses ruling of own watchdog body against Chief Judge Abdulla Mohamed”

  1. anyone who is interested to know more details of failed status Maldives judicial system should read ... she is a former member of the Judicial service commission.

    Its a pity that still most of local folks fail to understand the core problem.

    without a just judiciary Maldives is next to failed state.

  2. This is exactly why Abdullah Ghazee had to be detained. We all know that the court system would not take any action against their own judge and they will find any possible loopholes to ensure that this corrupt guy remains free to rule and release criminals into our society. The Civil Court has just proven that ther really was no choice left the Anni but to detain the Ghazee in the interest of public security. Look at the state of our Country today and all because DRP, PPM etc leaders had to protect the corrupt judge at no matter what cost, in order to ensure their own dirty games remain hidden. Well, the truth prevails eventually and the Civil Court's decision is just the begining.

  3. This is what Aishath Velizinee was talking about. Her reward? Denigration and harassment to the point that she was stabbed on the street.

    Velizinee's manners, style of dress took precedence over her assertions against the Judiciary, and was accepted as coherent arguments against her credibility.

    It is clear now that MDPs endeavor of educating the Maldivian public of their own rights has been tantamount to flogging a dead horse. We have not reached that level of maturity as a society.

    We are bound to live as proles, serving a masterclass for the near future at least.

  4. Listen world, Velizinee is the key to thruth of the corrupt criminal past and proof of the incompetence of the Maldives judicary. Please read her report.. The country will continue to be in free fall until we reform our courts!!

  5. @peasant: On one hand you are right.

    The more sensitive one is, the more one cares, and therefore, the more acute the pain of despair is in this seemingly futile struggle for JUSTICE.

    Why hope for JUSTICE when it only causes us to experience the extra pain of dissapointment on top of the huge layer of pain we already have to deal with!

    In this world, pain, suffering, corruption does seem to have the last word. But we have to search deep down and experience the sense of right within ourselves, it is the deepest teaching our own pain has to offer us, saying, FIGHT ON! It is the Divine Voice within us, resisting the belief that death and suffering have the last word, no action done for the sake of love, which includes justice, can go unrewarded, no unjust or undeserved suffering can fail to bear the fruits of justice.

    Yet it is also obvious, that this Justice cannot be in this world...

    I truly love you for being so caring and hungry for Justice brother, you are evidently a deeply wise, just soul. I urge you to please refuse to accept the victory of suffering, death and futility in this universe, and fight on, which, I think, you ARE, or else you would probably not have bothered to comment on here even though you wonder if it is worth it!

  6. biggest joke of the century A HERO Abdulla Gazee the biggest and famous corrupted judge of maldives

  7. I do not know Chief Judge Abdulla personally but let us all try and talk sense here.

    Abdulla is accused of commenting on a political issue to the media. That is the extent of the accusation against him and nothing more. The JSC decided to take disciplinary action against him after deciding that they had reason to believe he had done so.

    However the problem here is not so much about personalities but rather about the lack of clearly spelled out rules and procedures.

    The JSC Act does not exempt their decisions from judicial review. This means that the Civil Court decision quashing any administrative action they take will stand. If it is not in the public interest to allow this situation to continue Parliament must amend the JSC act to give them the final say in making a finding on allegations of misconduct against judge.

    If so, then we are denying judges and magistrates of the right to appeal. For such a denial to be fair the JSC must set down clear rules of procedure under which judges are given a fair hearing before any action is taken against them. They must be given the chance to respond to any allegations and a detailed and thorough investigation must be carried out. Also in the interests of public confidence these rules and regulations must be known to the public.

    The courts of the country must be strengthened, no one is denying this fact. So must all our fledgling institutions. To ensure that we do not strangle our democracy in the crib all institutions require a supportive public, Parliament and government aiding and assisting these institutions in their development. Also the international community must lend their assistance in building these institutions.

    Contrary to claims by gossip-mongers Chief Judge Abdulla has a University degree in Shari'ah and possesses the highest academic qualifications among all judges in the Criminal Court bench. It takes a more intimate knowledge of the judiciary and its inner workings to know what the real issue is. If we are to replace Abdulla then an experienced, mature and well-trained legal expert must fill his shoes.

    At one time the Criminal Court was headed by the current PG and by Dr. Mohamed Jameel Ahmed later on. It takes someone of their caliber to head a superior court. If Parliament can ensure that a suitable replacement is waiting in the wings then by all means replace Abdulla if there is grounds to do so. However those grounds must be established if Abdulla's rights within our constitutional framework is to be secured.

  8. Attacking a single judge is not going to do us any good. Our judiciary needs structural reforms.

    The composition of the JSC needs to be changed in order to ensure that it is an apolitical and technical body.

    The Supreme Court which was appointed through a political deal struck between the MDP and DRP is highly skewed by way of composition towards favoring Shariah Law while our legal system has a strange mixture of English common law and Shariah elements haphazardly thrown together. The Supreme Court needs to be more balanced in order to ensure that the large number of English common law concepts and common-law-based statutes are implemented properly. Political parties must step up in this regard.

    A Bar Society must be established in this country to ensure that the legal community is held to certain standards.

    The local Law School at the Maldives National University which is in a very sorry state must be strengthened to ensure that it produces quality graduates which may fill up posts in the judiciary.

    Civil society efforts must be encouraged to promote legal research and review of judicial decisions. The existing situation is that two heavily-politicized religious NGOs, Jamiyyat Salaf and Islamic Foundation of Maldives are attempting to define the limits of legal discourse in this country.

    In an ideal situation, although Shariah law may inform legal decisions, concrete legal decisions must be taken through a codified framework rather than by implementing views held by different schools of Shariah in an ad hoc manner.

    The Department of Judicial Administration should step up efforts to document and publish judicial decisions to strengthen the legal practice and contribute to the study of law in the country.

    Especially with regards to criminal convictions, the government should do a better job of enforcing judicial decisions in order to build public confidence in the judiciary.

    Existing judges should be disqualified and removed from the bench if they cannot meet rigorous standards to test their knowledge and application of legal concepts. It must be noted here that a certificate from the local training institutes is meaningless without a Bar Council or other evaluating body as MNU is as yet notorious for issuing questionable certifications that hold no worth or value.

  9. To reform judiciary is the most beneficial work that any Maldivian can do now to maintain peace in the Maldives and to protect the country from any possibe attacks to the innocent Maldivian who are trying to bring back democracy. There are many followers of corrupt gazees like Abdullah gazee for financial benefits which makes the poor to loose the case and to suffer great loss. Abdullah Gaazi is a sick man who wants one world that's this world and needs no the other world after death like most of the Jews beleves

  10. What so special about Abdullah Gazee? There didn't pass a day without his photo or his name in the news since he was arrested. My point is not the only one arrested unjustly. Though he was arrested he was not tortured. But If you open your eyes and see the 30 years of brutal rule of dictator Maumoon , you wil see people tortured to death , people tortured till they become mentaly disable or blind. People torturd by ruthless Military and police till their bones break and permenatly disable for life. I myself was tortured by rude Military and after many years still suffering from it not because I did anything Wrong. Where is the justice for us? Where is the human right for people like me?
    From childhood we were brain washed and say that most ruthless solders were Israili solders , No by God the most ruthless and barberic solders were Maldivian Solders. Israili solders were far better and Show more compassion for at least their own people.
    We vote for Anni hoping for justice and change. But he chose to be ' hitirih' path for what ever reason I don't know. So now he has to pay for it. But he can't forgive on behalf of others.
    Shame on you politicians ! Shame on you all institutions ! Shame on Military and police. ! You called yourself Muslim.

  11. The reasons to putting off litigation are getting sillier, don't y'all think so?

  12. Mr. Abdulla Gazees case will be judged on the day of Judgement. And neighter Gayyoom nor Waheed Nor Nizam So nor Riyaz So can stop it. F*** the peace loving Maldives. Drink lies. Eat lies. and Shit lies ... until the Day of Judgement.


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