Personal issues creating JSC tension as Majlis committee unprepared to deal with “out of control” judicial watchdog

Tension continues to surround the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) as the chair and a fellow commission member accuse one other of code of conduct violations, while members of Parliament’s Independent Institutions Committee is have alleged it is unprepared to deal with the situation.

“The JSC is out of control right now, we must do something. The JSC president is ‘out of the circle’,” Parliament Independent Institutions Committee Member and MDP MP Ahmed Sameer told Minivan News today (August 29).

Last week, the JSC Chair and Supreme Court Justice Adam Mohamed was set to face a no-confidence vote introduced by fellow commission member Shuaib Abdul Rahman. Rahman claimed the JSC Chair had been abusing his powers by exerting undue influence on the commission’s decisions and that the entire JSC was in a state of limbo.

However, Adam Mohamed refused to table the no-confidence motion against himself, claiming that it would be in violation of the Maldives’constitution and the JSC Act.

In reaction to Mohamed’s refusal to table the motion, Rahmaan submitted a case against the chair to parliament’s Independent Institutions Committee, as well as to the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC).

This prompted the JSC Chair to file his own cases with the parliamentary committee and the ACC, requesting they penalise Rahman for breaching the JSC’s code of conduct. Mohamed claims that an internal JSC motion cannot be referred to any outside parties.

While Sameer today acknowledged that “there are a lot of issues arising from the JSC”, he explained that the parliamentary committee was not yet able to address them.

“The committee has not formed officially yet. We have to select a chair and deputy chair, then official work can begin,” said Sameer.

He anticipated that the parliamentary committee members will “hopefully” be chosen by next Monday or sometime later in the week.

Once the Independent Institutions Committee is officially formed, they will then hold an emergency meeting to address the urgent JSC issues, noted Sameer.

Meanwhile, though the JSC claims to be functioning as normal, the tension between Mohamed and Rahman is said to be palpable.

“From the standpoint of the Commission, this is a personal issue between President and Shuaib [Abdul Rahman], it is not something related to the JSC,” JSC Secretary General Aboobakuru Mohamed told Minivan News today.

“As staff of the Commission, we are not taking sides.”

He explained that “the JSC Chair is circulating press releases on behalf of himself, not the commission”, and that both Mohamed and Rahman are referring to the same articles in the JSC code of conduct.

“We had a JSC committee session yesterday and things were as normal, there were no personal grudges [affecting work] during the session,” said Aboobakuru Mohamed.

“It is definitely not affecting work. [However] the atmosphere yesterday was tense, we definitely feel the tension there,” he added.


4 thoughts on “Personal issues creating JSC tension as Majlis committee unprepared to deal with “out of control” judicial watchdog”

  1. “It is definitely not affecting work."

    What? Do the JSC members actually work on something? This is news. What work do they perform? There is no evidence of any! All we see are issue after issue piling up and ending a black hole called the JSC.

    Whatever goes into the JSC gets firmly trapped inside the JSC. There is no way out. In the same vein, Mr Mohammed cannot be touched, since he's firmly inside the black hole. As per the physics of black holes, there is only one route to them and no way out. People on the outside cannot also see into them. JSC, the first black hole discovered on a planet.

  2. This is the result of the overly politicized manner in which the drafters of the Constitution saw fit to shape our judiciary.

    Never once did the MDP or the then government of Maumoon give a though about the consequences. While they designed a JSC filled with the just the right amount of Presidential and parliamentary appointees and carefully selected career politicians within the judiciary, they failed to consider the havoc it would create.

    When Nasheed and the Parliament struggled to appoint a Supreme Court bench to each of their likings - the international community intervened. However the result was a Supreme Court that was not quite as 'supreme' as one would hope. The overly political nature of their constitution meant that the Judges of the Supreme Court themselves would often take center-stage in the power struggles between competing political interests.

    While, there are perfectly competent and some internationally-respected legal practitioners in our country who would do a better job as Justices of the Supreme Court, political parties would never consider appointing them because they would be too independent/powerful/not compromised to suit the needs of politicians. The current bench has proved themselves incapable of handling the formation of an independent judiciary.

    Meanwhile the constitution of the JSC remains the same.

    The only hope left is that political interests can come together to sort out this mess after the elections reveal the balance of power that would decide the tone and conduct of negotiations.

  3. @Maldivian Man on Fri, 30th Aug 2013 12:19 AM.
    You just hit it right on the head!

    Today, we know what happened and need no pundit telling us what happened, and who were responsible!


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