Commonwealth-backed report a “whitewash”: former president

Former President Mohamed Nasheed has branded the Commonwealth-backed Commission of National Inquiry (CNI) report a “whitewash”, claiming it purposefully excluded testimonies from key police and military figures concerning last year’s transfer of power.

The CNI report, which was published back in August last year, concluded there had been no coup, no duress and no mutiny during the controversial transfer of power that saw President Dr Mohamed Waheed Hassan Manik sworn into office. The findings were also welcomed at the time by the US State Department and the United Nations.

Nasheed alleged that despite the CNI report’s conclusions, a recent parliamentary inquiry had heard evidence from senior police and military figures that was omitted from the commission’s findings and supported allegations of a coup.

The comments were made following a recent visit by the Commonwealth Secretary General’s Special Envoy to the Maldives, Sir Don McKinnon. McKinnon, whose visit concluded yesterday (January 27), was in the country to discuss progress to “strengthen democratic institutions” in line with recommendations in the CNI report.

The Commonwealth Secretariat today said it would not be issuing a statement or making any comments on McKinnon’s visit at the present time.

Nasheed, who declined to meet with McKinnon during his visit, has expressed strong criticism of the investigation conducted by the CNI.

“The CNI report was a whitewash. It wilfully excluded testimony of police and army leaders – the very people best placed to ascertain whether the transfer of power was legal or not,” he stated.

The former president also slammed the government of President Dr Mohamed Waheed Hassan Manik, claiming it had taken no action against police and military officers for alleged human rights abuses during the transfer of power, or towards correcting issues with the country’s judiciary raised in the CNI’s conclusions.

In the same statement, Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) MP Mariya Didi condemned the Commonwealth-backed report for empowering and legitimising President Waheed’s government, which she accused of lacking a democratic mandate.

“The CNI report was to empower and embolden an illegitimate regime, which is now pressing charges against President Nasheed in the hope of disqualifying his candidature in the upcoming presidential elections. Uncertainties created by these politically motivated charges have skewed the election landscape and allowed campaign momentum for marginal political groups led by former international civil servants, feudal entrepreneurs and religious extremists that clearly do not have electoral support,” she claimed.

“Having stolen one presidency, the regime intends to rig the vote for another. This situation has grave consequences for the future of our democracy,” Mariya added.

“Cover-up” allegations

On Saturday (January 26), the MDP accused the Commonwealth Secretariat of being complicit in a “systematic government cover-up designed to subdue testimonies from key witnesses to the coup d’etat”.

MDP Spokesperson MP Hamid Abdul Ghafoor said at the time that respective accounts from the CNI and the UN concerning the transfer of power on February 7 were “not reflective of the experiences of Maldivians who witnessed and lived through the event both out on the streets and through their TV screens”.

“The letters sent to the government [concerning the transfer of power] represented a real shoddy job by these organisations. It is clear they did not do their homework. It is embarrassing,” Ghafoor said.

President’s Office Spokesperson Ahmed ‘Topy’ Thaufeeq meanwhile told Minivan News last week that the CNI report was a “transparent” process undertaken by “qualified Maldivian people”.

“Because of this, the CNI report is accepted by the government. We have a judiciary, if anyone has a problem with this affair they can go to the courts themselves,” he claimed.


19 thoughts on “Commonwealth-backed report a “whitewash”: former president”

  1. Incredible shoddy proess, clearly a stitch up on the former elected regime. Quite incredible. How did they get away with it??

  2. If Prez Nasheed is re elected, he must tell the world what Commonwealth have been part of.

  3. Its statements like these which isolates MDP further both domestically and internationally.

    It shows MDP's political immaturity when they go on shouting out to organizations like the Commonwealth and the UN. The CoNI report was backed and endorsed by the international community including the US and India. It also prompted the United Kingdom to normalize relations with the Maldives government.

    The only entity which opposed the report was MDP with good reason. Because it exposed their failure which partly, if not mostly contributed to the events on 7 February.

    MDP's statement on Commonwealth 'whitewashing' the CoNI report has two possible explanations; either the Waheed Government has been extremely successful in wooing the international community such as UN, Commonwealth, US etc (which I doubt is the case), or MDP's outreach to international organizations and other countries have been an total and utter failure. Alarm bells should ring when no one listens to what they have to say.

  4. why the hell would the commonwealth or the appointed judge and observers have any interest in whitewashing whatever happened in this country on that day? They have no reason or motive to do so. the power transfer, as one blogger by the name of endhimariyambu put it, just ticked all the legal boxes. so they couldn't conclude it a coup.

  5. This is damming evidence against the report. How can they delete the key witness statements and have 90% of the vote as well. Something is seriously wrong here...

  6. Nasheed had no credibility and he never able to live up to his promises and he never able to tell any truth and he is a big lier.

    I doubt that this guy will ever win any election in Maldives and may be he can be the president of his cronies only.

    He is the man who are responsible for all the violation in this country and when he is outside Maldives, the country does go silent and when he return his cronies will be charged to go on the roads.

  7. @Ibrahim Saleem on Mon, 28th Jan 2013 11:51 PM

    "Its statements like these which isolates MDP further both domestically and internationally."

    That may be so, but I sympathise with their grievances. MDP has made many mistakes. The most relevant to the story here is their acceptance of the make-up of the CONI. To call that a Commission of "National" Inquiry was a blatant abuse of human language.

    The very man who led the power "transfer" commissioned the inquiry, in order to clear him and his affiliates. The fox was in charge of the hen-house. Why did MDP even agree to sit on that commission in the first place?

    It would have been a "National" inquiry if it was a public one, setup by the only elected body in town, i.e. Majlis. The hearings should have been in public and we should have all been allowed full access to the accounts of the police and army officers involved.

    That can still be done, and is the only "National" inquiry that would put a closure on this.

  8. This is the ONLY thing this loser can do now.

    He knows the tables have now tilted away from him. He has no way of winning the coming elections, especially with his anti-religious agenda.

    He drinks, smokes marijuana, does not believe in Islam. Please dont try to white wash these activities.

    So, the only chance he has is to hang on to the thread that he was ousted illegally, which is what he is trying to do here.

    And in part he is right too. He WAS ousted illegally, regardless of what the CONI report was saying. The CoNI's main agenda was to create a peaceful situation here, not necessarily the most ethical or legal conclusion. Everybody knows this.

    The touch on religion would turn tables so fast that heads would spin. That was the mistake Nasheed made. That was the tool that ousted MAG too.

    But, thats Maldesh for you. Corrupt, highly unethical but above all born hypocrites, that shames Arabia.

  9. Nasheed became a liabilty to the international communtiy thats what happened, he is a walking contadiction and liability.

  10. CoNI findings are based on 100 over witnesses and you cant simply make report on 2 Ingelicens officers n army off who claims "here say" more than on the factuals. If you take simply context from a full report then your judgement is very bias.
    It is shamefull a former Pres accusing Intnl Bodies like UN & Commonwealth just because CoNi findings did not favour his lies.

  11. The best solution can be brought by the people of Maldives, not commonwealth and other OG. You dont need any wittiness for the day 7the Feb 2012 how the executive power was transferred. Not by the people of Maldives, but only by handful people supported by Dictator Gayoom. Nazim and Riyaz, in the first line.
    Sir Mackinon was awarded by Queen and Gayoom was same. They will not find any fault,look Chile former dictator Pinoche also was guilty murder but British Gov send him back to his nation.Cause he helped Queen to solve Falkland dispute.
    You people must finsd a solution, dont let time run with no result. Your peopel are-suffering, Waheedudeen operation Badoss Resort against People of Maldives.

  12. Just imagine involvements these Org's in other poor nations. I can not recall any prolific settlements by letting these big Org's involved. This is a good example here in the Maldives. Highly paid officials for corruption. Put on a big show and so called "reports" to cover up. Its time that we handle this on our own. The only Coup with live broadcast plus all these facts, videos, testimonies of top ranking officials. With all these sacrifice, what do we get? I see that these Organizations enjoy this. What a shame!! May Allah bless the Maldives with a fair and an early election. Amen!!

  13. @Ahmed Bin Addu Bin Suvadheeb

    I think MDP made a calculated risk in accepting the composition of CoNI. The moment it was 'internationalized', their concerns, and I might add here, genuine concerns were put to CoNI. It also had an added impetus of having and international backing, and MDP were simply outmaneuvered to feel that being uncooperative could amount to obstruction of an internationally backed inquiry, could lose support for their cause from the UN and Commonwealth, and could be seen by the general public as having something to hide.

    In the interest of 'dialogue', which was the on the tip of everyones tongue those days, MDP participated in the proceedings. As soon as they found out it wasn't working for them, Mr. Saeed does a runner having negated on MDP's earlier commitments to accept the findings.

    I recall vaguely Mr. Saeed being condemned later by both the Commonwealth and UN observers for his actions, or something of the sort.

    I also think the Majlis inquiry lacks credibility, being pursued by an MDP-dominated committee I highly doubt that any outcome could be the least bit impartial and objective. Hardly "National" at all, but a reflection of a certain political entity.

  14. well ... I am done with Maldives. I don't want to live anymore with extremist. baagees and a bunch of morons.
    I go for another place and you ex-brothers go on and screw yourself, or let that do by Qayoom and the mullahs.

  15. CoNI report which in fact is a shame, has done more damage to the Commonwealth, the UN, and the very people who called for this council, than it has done to the Maldives, MDP or even President Nasheed himself!

  16. @Radhun

    100 witnesses, who were silenced, and their words struck from the record.

    Right? 😛

  17. nothing will be solved if mdp doesn't win election. even if the elections are monitored by foreign observers it will be called unfair and rigged. the observers will be accused of taking bribes, helping the coup etc.the winner will be the called the leader of the coup.

  18. This McKinnon character has lost all diplomatic credibility. He needs to be put out to pasture in the obscure hills of New Zealand!


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