Independent MP Mohamed Nasheed yesterday proposed a resolution in parliament to determine existing laws “inconsistent” with the country’s constitution.
Proposing the bill, Nasheed said that according to the constitution it was a duty of the executive to assemble a list of articles of the constitution inconsistent with the laws within 30 days of commencement of the constitution, and that it was a duty of MPs to amend those laws within 90 days after the inconsistent articles were presented.
MP Nasheed said the government had done its duty and presented a list of laws inconsistent with the constitution and that he regretted the duty of the MPs was still incomplete.
The constitution was established in August 7, 2008.
”After two months, it will be two years from the date we authenticated the constitution,” MP Nasheed said, ”so there is a duty of the parliament unfulfilled, and that’s why I presented this resolution – to complete one of these duties.”
Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) MP Ahmed Hamza said he supported the resolution presented by MP Nasheed.
”The parliament is the place where have to bow our heads to laws the most,” MP Hamza said, ”therefore, we would have to compete the duties assigned to us under article 299 [of the constitution],”
MP Hamza said that there were many difficulties faced because parliamentarians had failed to complete this task.
”There are some ongoing court trails charged against this constitution,” MP Hamza said. ”Former president [Maumoon Abdul Gayum] has charged some people of my area [Bilehdhoo] over protesting against him during the last presidential elections campaign.”
MP Hamza said that although the parliament had not revoked the laws contradicting articles in the constitution, they would still be void.
”I would like to tell the Police, Prosecutor General’s office, the courts and Anti Corruption Commission that the powers given to them by former laws which are inconsistent with the constitution are all void,” he said.
People’s Alliance (PA) MP Abdul Azeez Jamaal Abubakuru also said he supported the resolution presented by MP Nasheed.
”This resolution should not be debated for long, and all the MPs should accept that this is our duty,” said Jamaal.
”I would like to thank MP Nasheed for presenting this as a resolution and would like to repeat that it is an important issue and should hasten to complete it soon.”
MDP MP and leader of MDP parliamentary group ‘Reeko’ Moosa Manik also said he supported the resolution.
”It is not the responsibility of MDP or the Dhivehi Rayyithunge Party [DRP] to make laws for the country,” Moosa said. ”It is the responsibility of the parliament.”
”We handed this first to a person called the speaker of the parliament – not to run the whole parliament, but to operate and supervise the administrative duties of the parliament,” Moosa said. ”We never thought that this matter would be raised by the former information minister, instead we feel the speaker and deputy speaker of the parliament should have brought this to our attention.”
He suggested that the MPs should work every day until midnight until the duties mentioned in article 299 were completed.
DRP deputy leader and MP Ali Waheed said that his party would “fully co-operate” with the work.