Condoms and black magic: police raid Usfasgandu

Additional reporting by Daniel Bosley

Police raided the opposition Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) protest camp at Usfasgandu this morning, after obtaining a search warrant from the Criminal Court and cordoning off the area from MDP demonstrators.

MDP MP Mariya Ahmed Didi was inside the cordon showing the warrant to a group of media representatives shortly after 8:00am, as dozens of police began to gather in the area.

Reasons for the search as stated on the warrant included: “suspected criminal activity”, “damage to public property”, and “suspected black magic performed in the area”.

Under evidence, the warrant alleged that people in the Usfasgandu area verbally abused police officers and damaged a police vehicle on April 20, obstructed a Maldives National Defence Force (MNDF) exercise of May 9, and on May 25 “MDP protesters threw a cursed rooster at MNDF officers.”

As blue-gloved officers from the Drug Enforcement Department (DED) arrived, a group of largely female protesters began to gather at the barricades set up near the STELCO building. The barricade was itself lightly manned by police, however a group of police stationed further back near the Dharubaaruge convention centre were equipped with riot shields, gas masks and rubber bullet guns.

The crowd was noisy and upset, but non-violent. An altercation erupted at the front between a group of women and several young men, whom protesters claimed had been sent by a government-affiliated party to provoke the crowd. Minivan News later observed one of these men being arrested by police after trying to break through the barricade.

Meanwhile, DED officers fanned out at the Usfasgandu site and began poking through plants and debris around the padlocked container under the main stage. A large group of police on the other side were picking through rocks along the seawall, while a police boat waited outside the harbour.

Media raced over to photograph the first discovery, retrieved from a nearby bush: cigarette butts and a brown substance wrapped in an MDP membership form. Police near the stage had meanwhile lifted up a wooden board and found a small plastic baggie containing the remnants of a dried substance.

A major find occurred after police broke open the container, searching through old paint tins and debris before reaching into a ceiling cavity, triumphantly producing a packet of condoms (‘Moods’ ultrathin).

The Usfasgandu area had been given to the MDP by the (MDP-dominated) Male’ City Council, after it was evicted by police from its previous camp just metres down the road at the tsunami monument. Police at the time claimed the area was being used as a hub for criminal activity and assorted deviancy, and a similar raid uncovered beer and condoms. The camp was immediately dismantled by the police and MNDF, and walls were painted over grey to remove all trace of the MDP from the area.

The Usfasgandu raid this morning ends a stalemate between the Home Ministry – headed by former Justice Minister during Maumoon Abdul Gayoom’s rule, Dr Mohamed Jameel – and Male’ City Council.

The Housing Ministry initially sought to repossess the area from the Council, which refused to cooperate. The Home Ministry then instructed police to retake the area, who approached the Criminal Court for a warrant. The court initially denied this warrant, stating that the repossession was a civil matter and not within its jurisdiction.

Eight days later and Home Minister Jameel yesterday announced that the Ministry had received complaints of criminal activity in the area: “No complaints of any criminal activities had been raised with us at the time [of the original court order request]. But now many complaints have been received including criminal offences,” he told local media.

Police Spokesperson Sub-inspector Hassan Haneef said that following a search of the area a decision would be taken on whether to shut down the site.

“If there is reasonable evidence of crimes being committed there, we would look to close the area,” he said.

Male City Mayor Ali ‘Maizaan’ Manik was standing next to a cage full of crows – kept on the site by the MDP demonstrators to mock President Mohamed Waheed, who is caricatured as a crow on the popular Maakanaa Show.

“I’m too angry to talk right now,” he told Minivan News, as police were left to pick through the area after media scurried to protect their cameras from the sudden downpour.

Back through the police barricades, one visibly upset protester expressed frustration at what he described as “a police state”.

“We just want somewhere to peacefully protest,” he said. “They are just going to plant something, like drugs or explosives, so they can blame us. What can we do? We are helpless.”

An older man came up, put his hand on his shoulder, and led him out of the rain.


36 thoughts on “Condoms and black magic: police raid Usfasgandu”

  1. Wow cudos to the writer on the last two lines. F****** emotional that it makes me want to shed a tear and change my views.

    Really is it hard for you guys to write something as sentimental on the real heroes of our country once in a while ?

  2. @nova: there are dedicated sources for your kind haveeru and sun

    no need to praise a bunch of traitors

  3. @nova : and while you are at it, how about the correct spelling kudos, eh?

    Are you and the likes of you so blind and shallow that you can't see what exactly is happening?? i don't belong to a certain party, but the acts of the current government, inclusive of the Police and MNDF, has widely opened my eyes. do you think the supporters of MDP who visit Usfasgandu every night do not have place in their house to keep a pack of condom?? or you think their is some sort of orgy going on at usfasgandu every night?? or you think people sit their and smoke grass evrey night?
    Tell me ONE place in Male' where you will NOT find condoms, or drugs, or alchohol. have you forgotten the many times condoms were found inside mosques?? forget about the number of people caught in the act inside there!!

    Take a tour inside any of the Police koshi or MNDF quarters, you'll get a years supply of fresh condoms and even more of used ones!!

    apart from the political implications of the raid, i think the government should humour themselves a bit with the find. I think finding condoms (used or unused) are anyday better than finding a day old baby, the sick community we are!

  4. not surprised at all to find such things there. the yellow thugs are a menace to society and they should be punished!

  5. condoms are found lying all over the streets of male. heck, i saw a condom floating on a puddle on my way to work. caught one while swimming at the artificial beach. but NOW tht a pack of condoms were found at the MDP gathering place, THATS a big deal.
    and cursed roosters and blak magic? u gotta be kiddin me... its the 21st century people. i rest my case. LOL

  6. We need to lock up all the crows and roosters. Who knows how many have been cursed? Heaven help us!

  7. HIV has been identified as high risk in the Maldives. It is a threat given the research that have been published by Ministry of Health in the recent past. With increasing injecting drug use and unprotected sex CONDOM use is probably saving lives and a possible epidermic. and

    I would have to say that the amount condoms have been mentioned in the media now is raising awareness. Media attention whether bad or good raises awareness and maybe people including adolescents would now be curious and research on condom use. This is probably the best awareness raising effort. Better than any awareness conducted by the government in collaboration with INGO's.

  8. Why is the "Champion" of environment keeping crows caged?

    Some say "crow" is meant to represent "Prez Waheed" as depicted in 'Makana show". Others say crows are used for black magic since olden days to kill people and if successful the 'target" will die! Another version is that Black Magic using crows could end up in a curse on the land!

    As intriguing as all this sounds, I don't have the slightest clue as to what a self proclaimed center-right political party like MDP which is led by a British educated and assisted Leader is doing with these crows and hens.

    I don't see the connection place for these birds in modern politics. I heard that MDPians carry these crows and hens on the streets during their frequent demonstrations together with brewing of smoke and chants of Black Magic!

    Isn't this getting carried a way a little bit? One would hope that Anni will stay focused on the message and logical arguments instead of all this mumbo jumbo!

  9. in such madness that happend in Maldives soon will be appear Condom Democracy Party and starting fight over parlament place using black magic and Harry Potter's magic stick

  10. @Ilyaas Ahmed; the mumbo jumbo wired stuff is making the regime and kaalhu president go nuts and destruct themselves.. that's is the power of it... nothing superstituious...

  11. @ ilyas ahmed
    Yes i agree with you that crows and hens were used in the mdp protests. And you're saying a British educated President Nasheed should stop it?? And why?
    Hold on for a moment. Pres Nasheed taught us the importance of freedom of expression and stood by this right during his 3 year rule. And now he should tell the MDPians how to express against the atrocity that had befallen on the people of the Maldives? Really? So now President Nasheed should become a dictator? force the MDP people to shut their mouths, hold their anger and frustrations because he is British educated? British educated or not, he is a Maldivian who respects the cultures and traditions of his people. If this is how people of the Maldives who are against the coup- led government wants to express their anger, so be it. It doesnt harm anyone nor does it violate anyone's right either. Kudos ...))

  12. These accursed birds! Nothing good will come out of this. Shoot them all i say. Did we not read somewhere recently that the army had dispatched a team to get rid of the crows and bats in some region or atoll ? I think we should start shooting those in cages first.Easier to aim and fire. No need to waste bullets.Think of the national budget! Haven't we got an austerity programme on or something?

  13. MNDF ma aadheyskoffa midhannavanee thiya hen nuhadhaashey. Naacharangee kulheyne fasgadeh netheeyaa esoru menn foohivegen halaakuvaane noon.

  14. @ dhonkamana on Tue, 29th May 2012 6:52 PM 

    Hello! If you re-read my post you will notice that I have not said Nasheed should stop or ask the MDPians to stop their Mumbai jumbo.

    Instead exercising my freedom to express my thoughts 🙂 I have simply musedl and asked the question "Isn't this getting carried away etc.".

    I am an MDP member who worked hard to elect Nsheed and voted for him. I didn't support what he did during the last few months of his rule. I don't support Waheed. There are many like me and such acts of tribal voodoo as part of political activities damages our our hope in Nasheed to lead a vibrant democratic Party erodes. That's all.

    By all means carry with the jumbo jumbo or whatever else that you guys feel is necessary.

  15. Evan Hassan Naseem, 19 years ol, cold-blooded murdered by dictators forces ... "not one single bone was not broken ..." ... his murderers still among them ... never forgotten, never forgiven ... price to be paid

  16. @ Mohm Shiraz - uninhabited on Tue, 29th May 2012 8:26 PM

    In democratic societies such acts are prosecuted in a Court of Law and the guilty are sentenced according to the Penal Code if found guilty. That is how the "price is paid" by the guilty.

    Evan Naseem's case was prosecuted and those found guilty were jailed. Subsequently we heard that some had their sentences reduced.

    Ex Prez Nasheed had 3 years to re-visit the case and if there was any grounds on which the cases to be re-tried or more people to be charged, Anni had more than enough time to do that.

    Failure to prosecute any more persons or to re-try those that were initially charged can only be deemed as the matter closed and justice served.

    One may now ask the question, why were the sentences reduced? Good point! It is customary in this "all-connected society" to get someone to call someone or to claim medical and get sentences reduced. The most hard core criminals convicted of murder, rape, gang war, drug trafficking, child abuse etc. are routinely released or sentenced reduced/commuted.

    The entire Criminal Justice System is broken. Incompetent, unqualified judges to corrupt well qualified judges to whatever else all add up to web of doom.

    So, the murderers of Eva Naseem have already been "punished" as per Maldivian norms and traditions!!

    I don't weep for Evan Naseem. I weep for the victims of daily random murders of our youth by gangsters and the thousands of our youth "dying while being alive in name", because of drug trafficking by unscrupulous gangsters. I also weep for the children being abused by their parents and relatives every day in our society. My tears are for them.

  17. @ peasant on Tue, 29th May 2012 9:14 PM

    A friend in Customs once told me that condoms, dildos, sex toys and other "artificial unnatural items" used during sex as well as idols of worship, dogs, pork, liquor and drugs are illegal and banned from import.

    Yet all these items are widely in use by the locals apart from perhaps idols of worship. Liquor is consumed by a large number of the community and socially accepted. Drugs including heroin is sold on every street corner of Male'.

  18. I am cursing those cops who without any feelings kept on spraying pepper spray into the eyes of the bystanders. I am cursing those who ordered the Police to be this brutal. May all those who are responsible go blind sooner than later.
    Whoever becomes next President of Maldives He should not allow any of these violent sick brutal cops who are blatantly violating the rights of our citizens should not go scot free. My prayers for that too.

  19. this situation wont calm down unless the traitors like Gasim, hassan saeed, riyaz, uhchu, kutti, and umar naseer bring to justice

  20. Sheesh, one packet of condoms doesn't make it an orgy. How much fornication goes on in Male in a single day? Does the Police know? Does anyone know or care?

    This is hypocrisy at its best. In any case, I'd be very keen to learn what law was broken by the presence of a packet of condoms. For all we know, that rubber could belong to a married couple.

  21. !. Home minister Jameel wanted "Usfasgandu" area to be brought under police control and the police requested for a warrant from the criminal court.
    2. Criminal court did not issue.
    3. Home minister Jameel states that "Usfasgandu" site is being used for criminal activity.
    4. Police gets a warrant to check the site for criminal activity.
    hmmmm why didn't Jameel go to step 2 ? it would be more convincing. Hope he learns to play the game next time.

  22. @Ahmed bin Addu, I think our AG will soon file a case against the red rooster for raping a black crow, making it worse by forgetting to wear condoms. To make matters worse he carried out these atrocities by bewitiching a load of freedom fighters gathered to express their resistance for a coup deetat.It is yet to prove wether the whooping of the rooster or the crow bewitched the people. In any case everyone gathered to exercise their constitutional rights of freedom to assembly and freedom are now convicted and ablo ghazee already have given a verdict. However he is asking the rooster to repeat the act he did with the crow by smoking the grass found their and this time also using the condoms which he forgot to use earlier.

  23. Male City Council is answerable to this whole matter. If MCL has released the "Usfasgandu" they must oversea the place and maintained according to the rules & regulations. No party should be allowed to hijack a public place and become a neusance to public. Whenever MDP occupies a place we have seen those are used as a platform to create violence and break the law. Yopu cant build cages and keep animals or birds. This has nothing to do with party movement.
    "Usfasgandu" needs to be free for public use as it has always been ever since the ground was created.

  24. maybe the crows killed even naseem. Lock up the crows please

  25. I wonder what the MNDF does to their recruits at their entry level. Definitely there is nothing of humanity or social responsibility. I think they will even F*** theirs mothers if their superiors order them.
    It is as though they intelligently captured a heavy armored crow with nuclear Condoms ready to take over the country. For GODS sake, this is our country and we need to save. It definitely is not going to be the [resent MNDF or the Police.
    Is'nt there an intelligent human being in the government.

  26. What home Minister, cut throat Jameel trained under the regime of Maumoon the ex criminal president. The cops as well as the Mndf are trained dogs by the former regime, why can't they then use various techniques to black mail people Cowards, they get naked only in the dark.A cup of tea and hedikka is enough for any cop to change sides.Condoms that is just a normal thing I'm sure of uou raid their barracks and Jameel's home and other places he visits there would be much more to unearth. Good the MDP are making the cops work their Arse out earlier they sat and enjoyed life. They need to raid some peoples homes then they will find what they are looking for.Fools who comment need to do proper formal schooling and understand what democracy means.

  27. I demand we introduce a new law:
    Cursed roosters must wear condoms at any time!!!

  28. Cursed roosters must wear condoms before approaching crows. Wonder if the police on duty at the site at night, now that they have taken over, will hear the cackling and crowing of roosters drifting in with the seabreeze after midnight? Or the caw-cawing of the crows as they search in vain for the confiscated condoms? The site is surely bound to be haunted, what with all the nefarious activities of the mdp!

  29. Better called Condom paradise. Condoms are so common in Male' streets , even I saw many times. Where is Saheem ? Please give some 'Darus' to these deviants.

  30. Thank god condoms are legalized today, otherwise we would have Bill Gates build a hospital for HIV and AIDS patient...We love sex, wherever it is, so until majlis creates a law that prohibits safe sex, it remains the only entertainment for most and only full time job for the hundreds of unpaid housewives!

    What a joke to even report such a stupid thing! How may people dont have a place to do it? and do you know before MDP took over this place, it was the only legal low lit place where couples (straight, gays and lesbians) could share few moments!


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