Court commences police chief’s ‘baaghee’ defamation case against former president

The Civil Court yesterday ( April 8 ) began hearing statements in a defamation case filed by Police Commissioner Abdulla Riyaz against former President Mohamed Nasheed.

Riyaz is seeking MVR3.75 million (US$243,506) in damages from Nasheed, who is accused of labelling the commissioner a ‘baaghee’ (traitor) following the controversial transfer of power on February 7, 2012, which saw sections of the police and military mutiny against the former government.

Nasheed is accused of continuing to call the commissioner a ‘baaghee’ even after a Commonwealth-backed Commission of National Inquiry (CNI) later concluded the government of President Dr Mohamed Waheed came to power constitutionally.

A Civil Court spokesperson confirmed to Minivan News that lawyers representing both Riyaz and Nasheed were present yesterday during the first of five hearings anticipated to determine the charges against the former president.

During the hearing, the presiding judge asked the defence to answer the allegations against Nasheed. The next hearing of the case is expected to allow Nadheed’s representatives to present a statement in his defence, according to a spokesperson for the Civil Court.

No date was set for the next hearing, the court claimed.

Riyaz’s defamation case had been scheduled to begin last year, but was later postponed upon request of the commissioner himself.

MDP MP and lawyer Mariya Ahmed Didi said the party has previously issued a statement following the postponement of the hearings, claiming that Nasheed was “anxious to proceed with the case”.

Mariya alleged that Commissioner Riyaz was hesitant to proceed with the defamation case for fear that he would not be able to prove that his standing in society or his wider reputation had suffered as a result of the former president’s comments.

“There are hundreds of witnesses just waiting to give their evidence in court. In addition, senior police and Maldives National Defence Force (MNDF) officers including [former] commissioner of Police Faseeh and Defence Force chief Moosa Jaleel have testified to the relevant committee of parliament that the events of February 7 and February 8 were indeed a coup,” she claimed. “We are confident that if we get a free and fair trial we will get a judgement in our favour.”

“Undermining” commisioner’s esteem

Riyaz’s lawyers have previously accused Nasheed of undermining the esteem and respect of the police commissioner by labelling him as a “traitor.”

The legal team also argued at the time that Nasheed’s words had compromised the safety of Riyaz, requiring security at his residence to be strengthened.

Commissioner Riyaz and Police Spokesperson Chief Inspetor Hassan Haneef were not responding to calls at time of press.

Meanwhile, MVR3.75 million in damages are being sought from Nasheed by serving Defence Minister Mohamed Nazim, who has also accused the former president of damaging his reputation by labelling a traitor during a public address last year.

Newspaper ‘Haveeru’ reported at the time that following a speech by Nasheed attacking the defence minister, a group of protesters came outside Nazim’s house, “leaving Nazim’s family in fear”.

Former Youth Minister Dr Hassan Latheef, who defended Nasheed at a Civil Court hearing held in October 2012, told the presiding judge at the time that the former president denied the charges against him.

Nasheed’s legal team has previously contended that Riyaz had filed the defamation case in the civil court at a time when the police were continuously arresting people for calling them ‘baaghee’ on the streets. The same representatives also accused the country’s criminal court of continuing to provide extensions of detention periods for people arrested under the charges.

Further charges

Nasheed is also currently in the process of being tried on charges that  he illegally detained a senior judge during the end of his presidency.

However, all trials concerning the judge’s detention were suspended earlier this month pending a High Court ruling on the legitimacy of the bench of the Hulhumale’ Magistrate Court conducting Nasheed’s case.


4 thoughts on “Court commences police chief’s ‘baaghee’ defamation case against former president”

  1. Defamation, piracy, selling of expired food, fake medicines in Pharmacies, unqualified teachers, are category 3 issues.

    Category 1 crimes are rampant. Murder, terrorizing, rape...

    Priority must be given to category 1 first.

  2. I guess Abdulla Riyaz must be broke after his drug-dollars finally ran out from paying the uneducated thugs and paateys in uniform and body armor.

  3. Look at all of you sheep getting riled up about these corrupt psycho politicians,
    ALL of them are corrupt, NONE of them have our best interests, and they have been and always WILL rob us blind, toy with our economy and tourism to further their own agenda,
    Yameen,Thasneem,Nasheed, maumoon,Gasim,Adaalath psychos,
    Same crap, representing the same crap, lining their own and their senior party officials pockets!
    We are a nation of 12 and a half people, and if we start thinking for ourselves, instead of relying on these idiots, and educating our young, making them disciplined, intelligent, innovative, hard working people, make them into doctors, engineers, scientists, IT experts, and try to actually build industry, the same way other nations which have no natural resources have become wealthy (eg singapore and hong kong), instead of wallowing on politics, following idiot sheikhs who barely get Islam themselves, and try to get praise from the west, as if we are their pet monkeys doing the democratic trick for their grand media carnival, We will get somewhere.
    Its time to get some integrity and use our God given brains and actually work hard for something instead of relying on these evil retards


Comments are closed.