CMAG “deeply concerned” at lack of progress in all-party talks

The Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG) has expressed “disappointment and deep concern” at the lack of progress in the all-party talks, intended to lead to an early election and resolution of the current political crisis.

The MDP has said it remains committed to discussions around setting a date for early elections, however the former opposition parties with strong representation in the newly reappointed executive, including the Dhivehi Rayithunge Party (DRP), Adhaalath Party (AP), Jumhoree Party (JP) and the Progressive Party of the Maldives (PPM), withdrew from the talks following the disruption of parliament on March 1, after the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) refused to allow Dr Mohamed Waheed to deliver the presidential address to the opening session. A similar stand-off is expected on Monday, with the MDP maintaining that Dr Waheed’s presidency is illegitimate, and the new government reluctant to set an election date, citing the need for “conditions to be right”.

In a statement issued on Friday, CMAG said it “continued to be strongly of the view that the earliest possible expression of the will of the people was required to establish universal faith in the legitimacy of those who govern the [Maldives].”

CMAG – the Commonwealth’s democracy and human rights arm – “urged all parties to engage in dialogue without delay, in earnest and in good faith with a view to achieving agreement on the date of early elections, and the processes required to do so, including any necessary constitutional amendments and supporting legislation.”

Following a fact-finding mission in February and an extraordinary meeting on the situation in London, the Commonwealth suspended the Maldives from participation in CMAG and called for an internationally-assisted independent inquiry into the circumstances surrounding the change of government on February 7, which former President Mohamed Nasheed contends was an opposition resort owner-sponsored and police and military-led coup d’état.

The Commonwealth also expressed concern about early efforts on behalf of Dr Mohamed Waheed Hassan’s new government to arrest former President Nasheed, following the issuing of an arrest warrant in the immediate days following the change of power.

In its most recent statement, CMAG expressed regret over the disruption of parliament on March 1, and “urged all parties to engage in dialogue without delay, in earnest and in good faith with a view to achieving agreement on the date of early elections, and the processes required to do so, including any necessary constitutional amendments and supporting legislation.

“The Group also noted that the Commission of National Inquiry in Maldives had commenced its investigation into the events between 14 January and 8 February 2012, but that it had not secured cross-party support. In this context, CMAG acknowledged that international assistance for the investigative mechanism has been requested, and noted that the Commonwealth could be of potential assistance. It reiterated its strong belief in the importance of the work of the Commission and the conviction this should carry in Maldives and internationally.”

A programme of assistance for the judiciary will commence shortly, CMAG stated, and noted the arrival of the Commonwealth Secretary-General’s Special Envoy, Sir Donald McKinnon, on March 16.

“During his visit, the Special Envoy hopes to meet all the principal stakeholders to promote the consolidation of democratic culture and institutions and Commonwealth values and principles, to encourage inclusive agreement among political leaders on a way forward from the current situation, and to oversee further Commonwealth support for Maldives, including technical assistance,” the organisation noted.

Meanwhile the Maldives remains on CMAG’s agenda. The group will meet in decided to retain Maldives on its agenda, noting that it would meet in April when further steps could be considered in light of progress over the next month.

The most recent CMAG meeting was chaired by Dr Surujrattan Rambachan, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Communications of Trinidad and Tobago.

Other Ministers participating in the teleconference included Senator Bob Carr, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Australia; John Baird, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Canada; Bernard K Membe, Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of Tanzania; and Ebun Jusu, Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of Sierra Leone.


22 thoughts on “CMAG “deeply concerned” at lack of progress in all-party talks”

  1. Dr.Waheed is so arrogant, he wont listen to the CMAG... I call the UN to send NATO forces here and take control..

  2. I really wonder if CMAG genuinely wants to reform the political/social/economic issues or just blindly LOVES previous president Nasheed! Becoz if CMAG looks at deep why Nasheed’s presidency lost the steam and finally engine drop dead due many reasons which he and his cronies doesn’t want to accept!
    1.Many nights of partying and clubbing at close by resorts with alcohol and girls while many Maldivians were suffering due to economic difficulties.
    2.Wide spread corruption at the MDP core (including previous chairperson Mariya Didi and current unelected chair Rekko Moosa Manik) and also carrying the dirt (well know corrupt dealers like Ibrahim Hussain Zaki and j Afeef) from Gayoom regime.
    3.Failing to make any progress on transitional justice and rather making underhand deals with the corrupt and brutal elements of Gayoom regime, such as Ilyas Ibrahim and others.
    4.Trying to dismantle the peace and tranquility of Maldives calm social sphere with widespread alcohol sales and free distribution to youth, while it’s a constitutionally banned for Maldivians.
    5.Trying to promote Suffism (a deviant and a softer version of Islam) and Atheism to destroy the Islamic faith from Maldives under a sinister plan.
    6.Nasheed and other core MDP members been so erratic and arrogance on many national issues such as privatization and taxation.
    7.Nasheed and core MDP members hijacking MDP congress for their own personal gains, while NO MDP president has survived even the party from the Nasheed’s control drug/alcohol street thugs.
    8.Majority of MDP MP’s greed for personal gain as Gayoom’s MP’s is destroying this country! Classic example is MP Alhan and MP Ali Waheed.

    CMAG needs to seriously do its analysis to support either OLD DICTATOR GAYOOM OR YOUNG DICTATOR NASHEED or support a democratic reform process in MDP, PPM, DRP first before the elections!! WE THE CITIZENS ARE WATCHING YOU..WE SHALL CAST OUR VOTE AND SAY NO TO DICTATORS!!! WAIT AND SEE..

  3. Suspension is not really enough. Maldives must now be expelled. Many Maldivian leaders do not seem to know even what democracy is. At the moment, Maldives is a Police State, and the way it is going, Maldives will be a second Pakistan soon. In Pakistan,the military is the leading political institution, and the civilians are subservient to the military.

    Mohamed Nasheed was overthrown with the help of the police and the army. Army and police were incited to revolt and even bribed by businessmen and politicians.

    There is something worse in the Maldives than in Pakistan. The last military dictator in Pakistan, General Musharaf, was overthrown by the legal profession and the judiciary in Pakistan.

    There does not seem to be any strong judiciary and legal profession in the Maldive Islands as yet.So, the prospects for democracy in the Maldives are more bleak than in Pakistan.

    Intervention of the army and police in Maldivian politics is a new phenomenon and this phenomenon must not be allowed to grow and mature.

    If it does grow and take roots in Maldivian soil, the Maldives will have to stay outside the Commonwealth for ever.

    Like Burma.

  4. This is an illegal government and they are stalling. Let the investigation commence and an election to follow.

  5. Maldives is not a police state. I state this because i have heard lots of my friends and office colleagues yell "Baagee waheed" on numerous occassions in street protests, but cops havent arrested them. In a police state, expression of these kinds of opinions would probably get them jailed, but here the cops merely smile and shrug it off.

    Police only intervene in MDP protests when it starts to get violent, or when MDP people start throwing rocks and bricks, and start torching places. Thats not peaceful protesting by any accounts !

    The only people who seem to be unhappy about this change in Maldives are the 30,000 or 40,000 MDP protestors. The rest of Maldives (nearly 270,000 people) seem to be quite happy with this change. Life goes on as normal for them.

  6. Hey OrdinaryGuy
    Are you including my 03 year old daughter among the 270,000 happy people?? She has nothing to do with this.....She is happy because only her parents are taking good care of her, not because Dr.Waheed is President of Maldives

  7. @OrdinaryGuy
    do u not remember how brutal they were on da day after nasheed resigned. i saw everything for real. this is a police state. they are just afraid the world is watching every move they make now. amnesty is here. they are reporting every single thing these people do.
    the only reason they haven't done anything to raalhugandu area is because they can't. otherwise they would have stopped it by now.

  8. If Waheed wants to tell CMAG or any other international body that Gayyoom has nothing to do with this government, then he should sack Dunya Maumoon and Dr Samad (both idiots of Gayyoom's PPM).

    Surely you cannot ask golha force to tell the international community Gayyoom has no control over you.

    The PPM bunch at foreign office, especially Dunya Maumoon, is damaging Waheed's reputation.

  9. no democracy will function without the majority's will. today we see President Nasheed moving around freely, going from door to door to campaign for his party collegues, may it be Maafaru of Noonu Atoll or Kashidhoo of Male Atoll. he doesn't face ANY public pressure. On the other hand, DR. Waheed had been moving with a huge force of soldiers and police. But he was humiliated and harassed by the local island folks from every corner of the country.If President Nasheed really deserves a step down, the scenario will be the other way round.What we saw on the 7th. February 2012 was the climax of the zero tolerance of the former Dictator Qayyoom and his close allies, who threw away President Nasheed from his constitutionally elected presidency. THIS IS TOTALLY UNCONSTITUTIONAL!

  10. Do some homework. I this not a police state and the majority of Maldivians are not living in Male'. All the boda Male' people are behind it now, before and even before that. We raajethere pple are suffering. More over during President Nasheeds regime they dont care a hack about us ordinary pple. Part Part PARY. ABOLISH this party system and have our old monarchy back to serve our people.

  11. Dear Distinguished Gentlemen,

    Please do understand, for those who are in government today to accept an investigation, to act in good faith, to restore universal legitimacy of government and to go for early election is like asking them to take poison pill to cure them of the disease they are contaminated themselves with.

    Behind all the diplomacy and courtesy by this government, is avoidance of a feudal and suicidal attempt in order to protect the incidents, intentions and interest of a group of people who really did conspire to overthrow a government elected by the people that wasn't in favor of their "personal" and "commercial" gains and motives.

    Perhaps, what it will all boil down to is the will of the people and how civil they will be in few months ahead, in this case, on one side the people behind MDP and the rest of the country. History of this country does not give reference to the people on how to deal with the situation we are in today diplomatically, rather, the public would prefer to throw this government off its seat the way it showed as an example in its own coming to power.

    The inevitable election that is to come in 2013 be it not an early one, must be made a make or break for this government and the people behind it today. Because i think it is very clear that we should no longer tolerate the fact politics is personal anymore to Maumoon and his allies, it is larger a thing owned by the people and the majority of this country.

  12. Dear Commonwealth,

    If your CMAG investigation could not decide whether Nasheed's resignation was constitutional or not (the report of your fact-finding mission says so), why are you pushing for early elections?
    This is a stand you should take if your investigation showed that Nasheed's resignation was unconstitutional.

  13. Looks like the Commonwealth, like any other Brits Powered organisation, is dancing to Nasheed's tunes.

  14. I think the Commonwealth, not unlike MDP, is becomming a nuisance now.

  15. Too bad. CMAG is going to declare this government illegal and demand fresh elections in 90 days. the world is going to boycott Maldives until this Waheed governments fall

  16. So there is widespread disappointment among the Coup conspirators to the 15 March Commonwealth Statement. This should not be a surprise from a bunch of Islamists. Democracy as the world knows it is not on Waheed's agenda much to the surprise of the United Nations and the United States. While the US have suspended their initial statement, the UN is as usual bumbling. Where is Andrew Cox these days? One must look out for this gentleman. After all the UN statement was being prepared as Waheed went in for a shower before the famous swearing in without identifying himself by name.

  17. And while Indian intelligence confirm it is a coup, the Indian Foreign Ministry, in the guise of High Co missioner Mulley here in Male' appear to differ. But then the Foreign Secretary's stand is for early elections. It is a Coup d'Etat.

  18. @ordinary guy
    My daughter has already tasted tear gas thanks to Waheed, and idid not get to vote!

  19. @retired, pls understand this is diplomatic talk. what they mean v clearly, when translated, is that they find the power transfer to b unconstitutional and that's y they are calling for early vote.

  20. Well, Why is CMAG not even shallowly concerned or disappointed about the Parliament not being convened for this year in the Maldives? Some MDP MPS have sworn in public they would portray the same pigheadedness and obstruct the President from making the Presidential address on the 19th. Does CMAG fail to realize that former ruling party should let the Parliament session take place smoothly in order to pave way for progress to materialize in all-party talks?

  21. By the way, it's not the statement of the President if there is one at present that opens the Parliament. It is a constitutional recommendation that the President, if there is one, to present a statement at the opening session. There are many other more important constitutional provisions that have not been carried out apart from a presidential statement at the opening session of the Parliament.

    The constitution stipulates how the President may resign. Who cared to see if President Nasheed's resignation was as prescribed in the Constitution?

    So the Parliament can go into sessions without a presidential statement having been made. The present regime is unnecessarily insisting on it so as to ridicule the MDP and the hundreds and thousands of the citizens of this country who are members of the party and supporters of its democratic activities.

  22. The present "unelected" goverment is trying to buy time unitl 2013, and in the mean time they are finding a way to arrest former president so that he cannot take part in the next election. we all maldivians call to commonwealth and the international community to save us and our president from unlawful arrest and unlawful power of goverment


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