Ministerial appointment system “defective”, says MP Nasheed

The process of appointing cabinet members has been criticised as ‘defective’ by an Kuludufushi-South MP Mohamed ‘Kutti’ Nasheed, who has claimed that constitutional changes within the Supreme Court will be required to address the nation’s ongoing political deadlock.

The independent MP today told Minivan News that yesterday’s votes on ministerial appointments, which saw a boycott of the sitting by Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) MPs before the approval of just five of 12 cabinet posts by the opposition majority parliament, may require court intervention before being settled.

The claims comes as Miadhu today reported that Ahmed Thasmeen Ali, head of the opposition Dhivehi Rayyithunge Party (DRP), threatened to turn to the Supreme Court if the seven ministers rejected in yesterday’s vote remained in office.

Despite the stalemate over the cabinet appointment issue, MP Nasheed said parliament today functioned “normally” with a number of bills under discussion, such as the proposed strike legislation.

However, the independent MP claimed that differences of opinion, particularly between the MDP and the DRP, highlighted to all sides that there were “defects” within the constitution concerning ministerial appointments.

The appointment process remained “beyond resolution” in a highly partisan political environment.

“The [current] political environment is not conducive for a resolution within parliament,” he explained.

According to Nasheed, this difference of opinion stems from two very different processes of thought currently within parliament.

MDP rationale, Nasheed said, was that cabinet ministers could only be rejected under a motion of no-confidence that required 39 parliamentary votes to pass. However, he added, opposition groups remained unable to table possible no-confidence motions for cabinet members that had not been appointed by the Majlis.

These differences, he suggested, revealed a major defect in the appointment process.

“Only when all these processes are agreed can there be a cabinet,” he added. “I think the matter will need to be resolved through the Supreme Court.”

The President’s Press Secretary Mohamed Zuhair told Minivan News today that parliamentary rules required 39 votes to pass a no confidence motion concerning an individual cabinet minister.

With individual voting for every appointee during yesterday’s sitting falling short of the number of votes required for a no-confidence motion, Zuhair said the President “is happy the ministers are rightfully in place.”

He claimed that ministerial appointments were “not a case of popularity, but confidence”.

All 12 cabinet ministers were reinstated to their positions in July following a protest resignation about what they claimed were the “scorched earth” politics of the opposition-majority parliament.

Despite talks of legal action from the opposition, Parliamentery Speaker Abdulla Shahid – himself a DRP MP – said he was optimistic that the rival parties could reach an “amicable solution” within the current political framework.

“I am urging parties to engage in dialogue,” said Shahid, who claimed the ministerial statemate created by yesterday’s decision would not adversely affect important upcoming legislation such passing the 2011 budget.

Shahid told Minivan News that despite its fledgling status, Maldivian democracy “had a history of engaging in dialogue to overcome political deadlocks. We will find an amicable solution.”

Despite ongoing uncertainty resulting from issues such as the cabinet appointments, Shahid added that it was vital to establish ‘customs and norms’ within the Maldives’ parliamentary proceedings.


16 thoughts on “Ministerial appointment system “defective”, says MP Nasheed”

  1. President Nasheed (Anni) is repeatedly disappointing many of his supporters including myself. The president himself has to follow the constitution, if he wishes others to obey law and order. We got rid of Gayoom because he failed to respect the rule of law. Mr Nasheed is following the same foot step. First suspended the Supreme Court and now he is discrediting the Parliament both a fundamental breach of the Maldives constitution.

    I thought Anni would do a better job than former “Golhaboa”, but it seems that he is slowly becoming one. Can Anni do us a favour by not interpreting the constitution yourself? Ask Zuhair - half backed press secretary to do the same. You are p**** off grassroots supporters of “Anneh Dhivehi raajje”.

  2. So who cares?
    This guy Mohamed Nasheed is irrelevant to the political process now, so stop getting obvious statements from him. Did he say anything unique or anything that we do not know about already.

  3. Kolah is correct. This is totally Anni's fault. When he became President instead trying to be sweet to those who have plundered the nation and it s wealth should have been taken to task and punished insted showing the thiefs mercy. Had he done that by the time the Parlimantary elections to be held half of the crooks of the formerr regime would have run away. As for the Judiciery they have no right to reject cases arom Attirny General office as they need to judge fairly that the Atttorny was rejected only out of malice, hatred and to sabotage the governance of the country by MDP and it's president. By doing what they did they also directly have taken part in the coup. In any country to upkeep law and order the Judiciary must co-operate with the current government for the sake of the motherland.

  4. Constitution has a purpose - serving the people. But that object is now lost.

    People are more only interested in interpreting the law to their advantage. Its a good time for president Nasheed to be a statesmen and compromise. Why win a small battle of saving 7 guys and loose his presidency in controversy. Its best to get over with it. Otherwise, as things are going, more tit-for-tat would come and the budget may never get approved. And guess who would loose most..

  5. The opposition controlled Parliament has effectively decapitated the government of President Nasheed.

    They will refuse any Cabinet Minister that can actually perform the job! After all, their main aim right now is to bring down the government!

  6. Another washed up failure from the previous fiasco telling us about fair and effective procedure in the judiciary. You guys had the strategy of placing stooges in not only minesterial positions but also provided the best judiciary money could buy - literally. Don't call us Kutti and we will
    Never call on you again hopefully

  7. Is it the Constitution that's defective or the MPs?

    The lack of Good Will and Good Faith cannot be remedied however much a Constitution is re-written.

  8. Correct me if I'm wrong. I think the parliament has been inconsistent in the way they approve the ministers. In November 2008 approval was given the the whole cabinet in one go. After that when Razee, Gasim and Suoodh was appointed I think the approval was given separately for each minister and now this.

    No one in the right mind will believe that DRP/PA approved the ministers who perform according to the wish of the Maldivians. First look at the improvement in student performance from 2007 to 2010, then look at the hospitals and health system and you will know what I mean. If they cared about the Maldivians Musthafa should have been IN and Aminath Jameel OUT.

    Ali Hashim is OUT because, as finance minister he is doing the responsible thing by not giving Gasim the letter he wanted.

  9. Stop talking Nasheed (Kutti). You were behind all this. Remember the telephone conversation between Yamin, Nazim and you and the plan to dismiss ministers one by one?

  10. anyone who read the constitution will know that there is no indication in the constitution (see Article 129 (c) and (d)) clearly states that the president appointed cabinet ministers must be "approved" by the parliament. the president is only required to send the names of the persons he/she appoints to the parliament and parliament can vote whether they approve them or not. the consequence of parliament not approving those names is not stated anywhere in any legislative instrument in this country. this is what the previous parliament did with majority of it was advocating for the previous president, who knows a, b and c of democracy and presidential system of government!!! what a waste of time then and now??? we are getting repeatedly screwed by these "idiots" MPs who are supposedly there to make our lives better!

  11. I am so disappointed with our president who we worked so hard to elect. He created this mess by getting all ministerst to resign not thinking what could happen later. Now he has to save this somehow and to do this he have to be more dictatorial. We don't want to stand up against our president. But how long can we stay behind the president.
    Very disheartening

  12. Kutti, you're Becoming an MDP tool. Cabinet members cannot removed except by a vote of no confidence, but they cannot be approved except by parliament!!! They cannot start workin or be sworn in until they have been approved. This is complete bullcrap. The president has blatantly violated the constitution and the ministers still working continue to do so!!!

  13. Grass, i used to think the same thing, until i realized even if he hadn't made all his ministers resign he would have lost them one by one. Why? because the opposition had decided to pick them off one by one starting with the education minister. So the president's tactics actually bought his ministers more time.
    I wish the opposition would grow up, and pinpoint real faults this administration is doing instead of trying by hook or crook to bring down the government

  14. Leena, my view of the president now is, he is a stunt man, one after the other. He seems to be very good at it. Didn't we realize this earlier. Favours his very inner circle.

  15. Hypothetically speaking, if the endorsement of the parliament was the "must" requirement for appointing a cabinet minister, meaning only then the executive could really function, what would happen if the opposition tried to stop the gov functioning by refraining to give the required endorsement in the intent to bring down the gov? Do the executive cease from functioning then and there and what options and avenues does an executive have in these circumstances to continue serving the people according to the mandate entrusted by the public? Is it really the peoples wish to let the executive struggle with only the president and vice president half balancing the nation from plunging into oblivion? Ironically, in Maldives we see a remarkable example of such an eventuality which is kind of expected in the early days of democracy.

    Since the constitution is not crytal clear on this matter, the duty and authority rests upon the Supreme Court now. Such ambiguities and conflicting clauses in nature with Universal Human Rights and so on are all over the amended constitution, which is not of the least surprise since the revised version was enacted amidst a politically-chaotic power struggle in the parliament during those critical days to embrace reform and democracy whole-heartedly.

  16. As if we did not know that.

    Kutti has suffered a disastrous blow with the cash statement. It may have cost him his dreams of presidency itself.

    Thats cruel.


Comments are closed.