HRCM meets Chief Judge in MNDF custody

Members of the Human Rights Commission of Maldives (HRCM) visited Criminal Court Chief Judge Abdulla Mohamed in military custody yesterday.

A statement by the commission explained that the meeting was arranged under the HRCM’s national preventive mechanism (NPM) to monitor the treatment and condition of detainees and prevent ill-treatment.

Judge Abdulla was “in good health and provided all essential basic services” and did not complain of “any kind of harm or inhumane treatment”.

Abdulla Mohamed was controversially arrested by the military at about 11pm on Monday night. The detention prompted judges of the Criminal Court, High Court and Supreme Court as well as some members of the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) to immediately convene at the Department of Judicial Administration (DJA).

Shortly thereafter, the High Court issued a court order demanding the immediate release of Judge Abdulla, noting that the arrest was in violation of legal procedures specified in the Judges Act, which requires a warrant from a higher court as well the consultation of the Prosecutor General (PG) if a judge is to be taken into custody on criminal charges.

Police had summoned the chief judge for questioning on Monday for an undisclosed investigation. However after the judge requested the High Court to cancel the summons, it issued an injunction ordering police to halt enforcement of the summons pending a ruling.

Judge Abdulla was taken into custody by the Maldives National Defence Force (MNDF) later that night following a request for assistance by police. The Home Minister and Defence Minister appeared on state broadcaster the following night explaining that military assistance was sought for “fear of loss of public order and safety and national security” on account of Judge Abdulla, who has “taken the entire criminal justice system in his fist”.

Meanwhile during the emergency congregation of judges and lawyers in the early hours of Monday morning, Chief Justice Ahmed Faiz released a statement calling for the immediate release of Judge Abdulla.

Only the PG is authorised by the Judges Act to seek such an arrest warrant, the Chief Justice noted.
“The day these principle are demolished is the darkest and gloomiest time in the life of a nation,” the statement read.

The Supreme Court then issued an order to MNDF demanding the immediate release of the chief judge.

The government however continues to defy both the High Court and Supreme Court orders while Prosecutor General Ahmed Muiz has told local media that the Chief of Defence Forces and others involved in the arrest would be prosecuted for their “illegal actions”.

Opposition parties have launched daily protests and vowed to file no-confidence motions against the Home Minister and Defence Minister.

Meanwhile over 48 hours after his arrest, MNDF informed the judge’s family of his whereabouts and condition on Wednesday.

On Thursday, a group of 30 lawyers – including the current government’s first Attorney General Dhiyana Saeed and senior members of the Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) – released a statement appealing to the international community to urge the government to respect the constitution and law.

The lawyers insisted that Judge Abdulla’s arrest violated constitutional rights and legal procedures specified in the Judges Act as well as international norms.

Chief Justice Faiz meanwhile issued another statement last week appealing all state institutions to respect the powers and authority granted by the constitution to each organ of the state.

“In a constitutional system, a disruption to the legal status and powers of any institution is a disruption to the whole system,” the Chief Justice stated. “The consequences of a problem arising in one organ of the state will be faced by the whole system. Our constitutional system can only be maintained by protecting all state institutions.”

Faiz further appealed to all parties to respect democratic principles and remain within the bounds of the law and constitution.


9 thoughts on “HRCM meets Chief Judge in MNDF custody”

  1. How is it that only the PG can authorize a judges arrest? If the JSC can be stopped from forwarding a case against a judge by the Court, then there is no way for a PG to be given a reason to arrest a judge, because the reason can be blocked by the court!!

    Don't these lawyers and judges see that the system is broken?! That there is no accountability?

  2. "Chief Judge of the Criminal Court": of Maldives.,

    The world please know its not like your "Chief Judge of Criminal court" Punk doesn't even have the GCE O'level, we have his naughty films, certificate bought to the high heels

    I am one, If I say he will he will just bend and submit to my will, I so sure, that I will and I will continue in my dealings.

  3. Thank You Salim, You have the manliness and the guts to say what you want to say in your own name.

    Its very simple for me, I have and I will "pagaa" these judges.

    I will never trust these morons in Supreme Court and I don't see it happening may Allah bless us all may Alla bless us all with his Judgement.

  4. MNDF must hold this guy indefinitely. He case must be forwarded to remove him from power. The oppositions rallying because he has been helping them from the bench. Without him, we can bring the old man and his cronies to justice.

  5. If the judiciary can start to function and provide justice to the people of Maldives, then it would be the biggest achievement by this Government. I now understand why Velizinee was trying to stop Judges being made permanent, without
    legislation on Judges or the Courts.

  6. I commend HRC for doing what they are supposed to do on this occasion. They must investigate before making statements (politically motivated)

  7. Its funny when HRCM says that he is in "good health and all basic essentials". Yes physically he not be harmed but winder if they checked his mental status; been taken away suddenly in an inhumane way, leaving his family in doubt of his whereabouts, he may be constantly thinking about what the military or the police would do to his family members in order to punish him? So, how can they say that he is in good health? they should at least do a mental check up and provide evidence to the public.
    Note: Mental health is a very severe cause and an area that is rarely touched. So i call upon HRCM to take back their verdict and have a comprehensive check up on him (i.e: physical and mental check up) and then tell us if he is in good health

  8. The words of true visionaries are always disregarded. Aishath Velezinee was one who spoke and had no one who listened.

    The moment this government formed a coalition to topple Gayyoom, it was doomed to end in utter anarchy. This country is heading swiftly towards that, and irrecoverable economic damage, and possibly the loss of its soverignity, the most emasculating thing for a nation.


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