Home minister notes “better environment” after CNI report

Home Minister Mohamed Jameel has said the Maldives now provides a much “better environment” for the country’s political factions to work towards stability following the publication of the Commission of National Inquiry (CNI) report.

Speaking following a parade held yesterday in Male’ to commemorate the country’s Independence Day, rescheduled from earlier this year, Dr Jameel claimed that with the conclusion of the CNI’s work late last month, the government was now able to move ahead with its duty of serving the public.

The CNI’s findings, welcomed by the Commonwealth, US and the UN, rejected accusations that the present government came to power illegally, despite claims from former president Mohamed Nasheed that the report’s findings were flawed and failed to include key witness statements and evidence in its findings.

The now opposition Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) – of which Nasheed is the current presidential candidate – today said that it continued to hold severe structural concerns about the CNI’s conclusions. The concerns themselves were highlighted in a report prepared by Sri Lankan legal experts after a request from the MDP.

“Way forward”

Despite these concerns, the MDP has claimed the CNI report’s publication had provided the party with a “way forward” to push for institutional reform and early elections, whilst also lobbying to keep the Maldives on the agenda of the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG).  The party has contended that remaining on the agenda will help maintain international pressure on the government to enact a reform agenda – the need for which was raised in the CNI’s findings.

Home Minister Dr Jameel told Minivan News today that from the government’s perspective, the issue of February’s transfer of power had been firmly settled through the CNI’s findings. Dr Jameel claimed that any further political resolutions should be settled domestically.

“We will not dwell further on the same issue [CNI]. As a nation, reforms to the government and other institutions is an ongoing agenda like any other nation,” he said. “I do not believe that any international organisation, country or individual has the mandate or authority to dictate to us our national priorities and reform agenda – be it the Commonwealth or its Secretary General. We appreciate their engagement, but [the Commonwealth] should also recognise our need to move forward and allow us to find local solutions to local problems.”

Dr Jameel claimed that rescheduling the national Independence Day parade from July until yesterday was a timely reminder of the “importance of national unity, mutual respect and shared values.”

“It is more relevant now than at any point in history as the country is increasingly seen to be drifting away from those values due to political emotions, opinions and other exposures,” he said.

The Independence Day parade, which was concluded with a special ceremony at the  Galolhu Stadium in Male’, was attended by President Dr Mohamed Waheed Hassan and his wife,  First Lady Ilham Hussain.

Independence Day is celebrated on July 26, though Dr Jameel, who was also in attendance at the ceremony, said that the parade had been delayed from July owing to “time constraints” and had to be rescheduled to consider outstanding engagements of its participants.

Better environment

Addressing the home minister’s claims that the Maldives was now a “better environment” to address political differences following the CNI’s publication, MDP MP and Spokesperson Hamid Abdul Ghafoor said the MDP had offered to try and work with the government to pursue institutional reforms.

Ghafoor claimed these efforts had included attempts to try and work within Dr Waheed’s coalition government in what it called the “common interests” of the public –  a strategy that was later rebuffed.

“We do not want to be working with this government, we ourselves want to see early elections as soon as possible,” he said earlier this month.

Ghafoor claimed today that despite its reservations about the validity of the CNI’s findings, the party would continue to lobby to keep the Maldives on the agenda of the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG) to maintain international pressure on the government for early elections and institutional reform.

“We simply do not believe that the CNI report legitimises the government. If the [transfer of power] was not a coup then why are the country’s former opposition now leading the executive,” he said. “The structural issues that we have [with the CNI’s findings] will not just go away. Things are not going smoothly in the country.”

Ghafoor claimed that while attempts to have the People’s Majlis and Supreme Court rule whether the MDP should be regarded as the country’s main opposition or governing party had not been successful so far, the party still had power in the Majlis through parliamentary committees to meet aims for fresh polls.

“Right now we see the way forward is to continue to push for early elections. We will also push to keep us in the CMAG agenda and ensure there is a third party international pressure to ensure the government are held to a schedule regarding the CNI’s recommendations on institutional reform,” he said.

“We do see CNI report as a way forward and we would wish for CMAG to keep a watch on the country. So on the back of our reservations of the CNI report, we will coniute to lobby to keep the Maldives on CMAG’s agenda.

Despite the MDP’s lobbying, the government has this week urged CMAG to remove the country from its agenda.

Both Dunya Maumoon, State Minister for Foreign Affairs, and Dr Hassan Saeed, Special Advisor to the President, have publicly argued that the Maldives had been treated unfairly, suggesting that the country should leave the Commonwealth should it not be removed from the CMAG agenda without delay.


16 thoughts on “Home minister notes “better environment” after CNI report”

  1. I plan to keep up the pressure to educate MP Hamid Abdul Ghafoor.

    We practice a Presidential system of government where persons NOT a political party comes to power.

    This means that Nasheed and his VP Waheed came into power in 2008. Once Nasheed resigned Waheed took over as the Constitution mandates. Both Nasheed and Waheed are free to choose their Cabinet from among any citizen of the country who meet the Constitutional requirements. Neither of them are under any legal obligation to choose their appointees from a specific political party.

    So the presence within government of members of parties who were previously in opposition is not a legal issue.

    In fact Waheed had extended an invitation to the MDP to join the government early on which was refused in favor of Nasheed as it was feared that certain other factions within the party would gain strength if Waheed was allowed to nominate MDP members to government. Nasheed was and still continues to be scared of being sidelined.

  2. Nasheed is the one who is ruining MDP . It is high time for MDP to realize this and leave Nasheed aside and mover forward with a good leader from the party .

  3. This is getting ridiculous now. I also voted in the Public referendum to choose a system and the majority voted for a Presidential system.
    This means parties do not come to power. They can only control the legislative but never the executive power.
    Only a person is elected as a President and another person as his V. President.
    Nasheed was elected President irrespective of his party and even if he changes the Party and joins PPM, he would still be the President if he did not resign.

    It is time Hamid came down to Earth and stops drinking all this cool aid stuff.

    I have to say that Waheed himself has not helped this cause. It is also time, that he respects what the people voted for and come out and say openly that this is not a Parliamentary democracy and hence parties do not come to power.

  4. Although tsk tsk says we in the Maldives have a presidential form of government, I am not sure that we in the Maldives do have a true form of presidential system. Tsk Tsk may have based the opinion on what is written in our Constitution.

    However, although the Maldives Constitution says that the country is presidential, I believe that it is true only in theory. In practice, the form of government we have is a hybrid system where features that are salient in a parliamentary form of government are merged, sometimes with detrimental effects, with the features of a presidential form of government.

    What is obvious is that the president of the Maldives, quite unlike in a true presidential form of government, is upon elected to the post as a free individual, he is actually never free from the so called other "leaders" who having earlier failed in the presidential race re-emerge as coalition partners and continue to haunt him and adversely affect his political decisions. These so called coalition partners do have full control, pressure and influence over the president as they are also often political party leaders who also have members in the parliament. These leaders are the key players in forming the President's cabinet as well as appointing all the other political appointees of government offices.

    As I have stated above, it is exactly why the political party activists who are supporting the President and his government are assigned to important political posts.

    In case of Waheed, his so called coalition partners, an anomaly in any form of true presidential form of government,has successfully and quite effectively convinced him to believe that he could not run the affairs of the government and the presidency without them playing an unavoidable and indisputable coalition role in the affairs of his government and his presidency. Hence, the current political environment is not at all helping Waheed to exercise a true presidential form of government.

    I should also note here that President Anni, too, had faced the same pressure from the so called coalition partners when he assumed the presidency. Later, Anni tried to detach from them and govern as a true president, exercising power as it ought to be exercised in any true presidential form of government, that is choosing his own government on his own. Unfortunately, we all know he failed because those so called 'coalition leaders and partners" began fermenting partnership conflicts that emerged as the very first challenges President Anni had faced in his early days.

    The role of the influence of the coalition partners, some of whom are represented in the Parliament and others simply showing their people power support to exert influence,that was seen in the previous government and in the current government and the talk of their power, role and influence even in a next government, is proof that the Maldives does not have a true presidential form of government though in theory it is supposed to be. This is why, I describe the current form of government is a a hybrid of the Westminster-style parliamentary form of government and the US-style presidential form of government. Just like in Britain, we in the Maldives do see and experience how the parliament members and their leaders are pulling the "strings" that they have attached to Waheed and his cabinet-the latest being Gasim's comment on "his" Transport Minister in Waheed's cabinet.

    Adding to what I have just stated above, we also have seen and heard media statements given by coalition leaders stating they have personally hand picked their "boys" to the cabinet. Waheed, as president, simply presides over the oath taking ceremony. hehe.

    Hence, Unfortunately, here in the Maldives, quite contrary to the theoretic framework of a presidential form of government, we are truly practicing a "presidentio-parliamentary" hybrid form of government.

    In the heart of the heart of our every president, he would yearn to get elected with a simple majority and thereafter, govern as a president yielding the powers of a president vested in the Constitution which is just like in any other presidential form of government.

    Unfortunately, in the Maldives presidential election races held in post-Gayoom era, we do not yet see a president who can win a simple majority of votes on his own.

    Hence, after the first round of presidential race, we see an inconclusive result that shows two or three candidates with more votes than others but not enough to get elected on the first round. hence, going to the second round and gaining more votes means getting support from other less successful candidates.

    Ironically, it is the less successful candidates, the failed bunch in the first round of the presidential race, re-emerge as coalition partners to a president who is willing to accept their terms as well.The dirty tricks and the savagery that influence the presidential form of government thus begin right from the very first round of the inconclusive presidential race.

    Hence, in the heart of heart of the failed leaders, the main motive is to influence the president, his government, his policies and regain what they had failed to gain in their bid to get elected to the presidency. This is a truly, Westminster-style of government in disguise.What a joke!

    I believe that to be true to our constitution's form of true presidential form of government, we have to abandon the two-tier voting system to elect a president. If this is not done, the chances are we keep producing a hybrid presidential system, form of government, that will never produce a president who is free from the influence of the so called other "partners" who are in reality, the failed leaders in the first round.

  5. Please note that in my above comment,in the second paragraph from bottom, I meant to say a Westminster-style coalition-government formed after an inconclusive election.

  6. @ tsk tsk

    Nasheed and Waheed ran for election on the MDP-Ithihaadh ticket, on the MDP-Ithihaadh Manifesto signed by both leaders.

    I therefore believe that Waheed has an obligation to be his word to the electorate which voted him, along with Nasheed to deliver the MDP-Ithihaadh Manifesto.

    What he has done since he took office is to derail the polices of Nasheed and which Waheed surely endorsed, since he continued to be Nasheed's VP and sat on cabinet meetings where policy decisions for the programmes that Waheed has now discontinued were made.

    Waheed is not delivering MDP-Ithihaadh Manifesto. He is delivering the policies of the PPM, DRP, JP, DQP, QI, and the Adhaalath Party.

    The MDP made a decision not to work with Waheed until an investigation is done of the events that led to Nasheed's resignation. Waheed took his own cool time and dragged this investigation for the 6 months it has, to give him the time to undermine Nasheed's policies and projects and to bring forth his own which no doubt he will sell to the people during the Presidential Election as his victories, his achievements. isnt this what this is all about? get nasheed out of the way before the elections, so scared that he will win again.

  7. @tsk tsk

    As for your comments regarding Hamid, I don't think you need to educate him. He knows what he is talking about, so do you. The difference between you and Hamid is that he speaks the truth about what is, and you spin.

    Why for example did you fail to mention the fact that Hamid has said what he said because of the constitutional structure of the parliament which is based on the parliamentary system. You know very well how dysfunctional the the new Constitution is, but you choose to conveniently leave that out in your argument above. If that is not spin, what is? Lies are not only the spoken untruth, but also what is withheld.

    You know as well as I do that the new constitution has Presidential structure for executive leadership and a parliamentary structure for peoples representation in parliament ie to pass bills from government. There is a problem you will agree, when the parliamentary structure does not not allow the current President to submit a bill to parliament. Why did you fail to mention this in your comment?

    In the Presidential system of the USA Congress and the Senate is aligned with the President as head of state. One of the key responsibilities of the The Vice President of the USA is to liase between the White House and the representatives of the people. Our constitutional does not have that structure.

    Gasim has to take responsibility for the shoddy piece of work he passed as a constitution. he is responsible for all the constitutional mess we have now. Gasim delivered the constitution the way Gayoom wanted it. And so here we are.

    Embroiled in a right royal mess.

    Readers may recall that the MDP wanted a transitional government from 2008, for 3 or 5 years, to give time to develop the institutions in the new political order, and to train our leaders to take on the functions of a democratic state. Gayoom did not want that.

    Nasheed is a man of vision and he has worked very hard to build the foundation for integrity, but my dear tsk tsk you are one of the leaders who obstructed that.

    And then you write here and lecture the MDP?

    Just incredible. Your greed for wealth, and position of power has robbed you of all coherent thought reason and integrity. I feel sorry for you, indeed I do. So educated, so much potential but your soul so rotten, your life so out of integrity that you will never truly fly. What a waste.

    Nasheed is right. Maldives must continue to stay on CMAG while integrity is restored. Every single institution in the Maldives needs rehauling. The corrupt judiciary, the so called independent institutions, and the parliament, the Supreme Court.

    And our constitution revised. THIS is what Waheed should be doing instead of strutting around in his suits posturing as the new leader of the Maldives.

  8. tsk tsk . See United states of America where presidential system is praticed where the party runs the government not a single person . NOt Mitt Rommney or Barack Obama . even if you look a t socialist domractic republic of sri lanka same is praticed

  9. Baghee Waheed how does it feel to be a puppet of so many people, even his own wife is pushing him around.

  10. Just for a moment forget about parliamentary systems and presidential systems and think of the bare facts. Extrapolate the theory into the Maldivian reality.

    President Nasheed came to power on the strength of votes cast for him. 53% of the electorate voted him in. Even so he was the elected President of 100% of the electorate. Isn’t it obvious that if he was politically astute enough to read the story that the electoral numbers told he would still be President of Maldives?

    However President Nasheed wasn’t clever enough to keep loyal even the 53% who voted for him, leave alone the 47% that didn’t vote for him.

    The bottom line is that no leader can ever hope to survive in a democracy ignoring the voters that elected him – be it he was a Westminster style PM or USA style President. The dynamics here is very simple - the voters that got one elected keeps the person elected. President Nasheed cannot say he did not get ample warning; that he was alienating the electorate. Every single vote that was registered in Maldives be it a parliamentary election or local council election, after the 2008 elections he failed horribly. (Even after his resignation with his puerile allegations on Feb 7th his party lost every election).

    The net result was that President Nasheed blundered from one crisis to another. In democratic politics you forget the votes that got you elected at your own risk. The man in effect had a paltry 26% votes to call his own and in the fog of “success” forgot it and is now waking to this electoral reality.

    The contrast in Dr. Waheed as President compared to a novice as President is that President Waheed is able to translate text book constitutional theory into practice in the Maldivian context. That is truly his genius. He is able to maintain the coalition relatively healthy – yet.

    There will come a time when his coalition partners decide that their interest lies in the failiure of the coalition itself. Then the inter-forces within the coalition would be too turbulent to keep the coalition together healthy. Until now Dr. Waheed as President was clever enough to demonstrate to his coalition that it was in their interests to play ball with him.

    What would be interesting to see is democracy work in a “tea-cup”. This is going to be as good as it gets heh heh heeee …. 🙂

    MAG as authoritarian intrigued us for only 30 years. MAG as the democrat, in his role as father of democracy - I wonder for how long he would haunt us. Something tells me that it would be for ages after we pay the last respects to this unique son of Maldives.

  11. How many ways "this thing" is spun around, it is not going to erase the fact that democracy and people's rights were deeply wounded and killed on the 7th of February, 2012.

    Maldives in 2008 voted for a coalition government under the leadership of President Nasheed! Fact!

    This coalition disbanded themselves and the people who were with the original coalition joined forces with a group of fanatics working behind the shield of ISLAM (when they had the chance to achieve a common goal and slap their original partners), and treacherously brought down the government elected by the people using Police and the National Defence Force! Fact!

    We all have seen the mob being used, and manipulated to complete what they intended to do! Fact!

    If we are going to listen to these twists and dance to their tunes, I cannot understand where to place democracy and justice!

    If "this thing" is not settled by serving people justice, we surely would be backtracking into the very dictatorship we came out from!

    We perhaps would have generations to follow.
    And if we do not show them the right path today; I do not believe I would have anything to defend myself, if and when they question me of this injustice!

    And if we do injustice to them, who are we fooling and where and how do we stand?

    Be ready to accept their grievances along with their mocking perhaps even after death!!!!!

    Pathetic that Jameel, with all these facts think that it is "better environment".

    The problem with is that for who, is the question is what Jameel ("Falho Ali") does not understand!

    Settle all these issues with an election now!

  12. Never seen a person uglier than this Nappy bottomed Blackie Waheed.

    This man thinks he is liberal and western just because of his brood worships the black mother or the fact that he dosent know how to do islamic paryer.

    But the reality is that he is just like an Arab Dictator, may be he picked it up when he was studying in Lebanon.

  13. @ kaza:

    Accepted. My criticism of Hamid was against his insistence on spinning the line that "governments" are elected to head the Executive. As you have rightly pointed out we have a hybrid system that causes some amount of tension.

    Yet I think the best comment was made by "ah mad", from a strictly utilitarian or realistic viewpoint, Nasheed failed for obvious reasons which do not seem to hamper Waheed for now. Like ah mad said, elected leaders remain accountable to the electorate (or in the case of our country the power players in control of segments of the electorate) in the end.


Comments are closed.