PIC statement “not authorised by me”: PIC President

“I did not authorise the release of the statement”, Police Integrity Commission (PIC) President Shahindha Islmail has said, a day after the police watchdog released a statement dismissing the reports of police brutality and use of excessive force against Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) protesters.

Ismail told Minivan News on Thursday that she did not agree with the point which said police had not used excessive force, and therefore provided clear instructions to revise the draft statement to include the unlawful actions of the police observed by the commission.

However, she confirmed that the statement was released on Wednesday while she was on leave and that none of her suggestions were included, except the point that the protests had turned peaceful since July 21.

“As the protests have changed, I told [the commission members], the time had passed for us to comment on it and it was not a good idea to release the statement now condemning the protesters, as it has a possibility of causing further disruption of the peace,” the PIC President observed.

The contentious PIC statement said that police had not used excessive force to disperse the consecutive protests held by the MDP since early July, and that those protests were only broken up following the “removal of police barricades by the protesters and use of loud speakers after midnight ,and attacks against police with coins, pavement bricks, marble, metal pieces, chili water and plastic water bottles.”

“I did not disagree with the points that the protesters threw water bottles and different things that the police. The main thing I disagreed with was the point that police did not use excessive force. From what I have personally witnessed on the TV coverage and is PIC investigations, it is very clear this is not the case,” said Ismail.

She continued, “There have been several occassions when the police obstructed the protests by putting barricades down, despite the fact that the protests were going on in unrestricted areas. This I believe is a clear violation of people’s constitutional right to peaceful assembly.”

Furthermore, she observed that the “police have been acting in a way it seems to provoke the crowds,” Ismail alleged.

“We saw police officers walk into the crowds [protest] several times. Sometimes, it is to bring the barricades taken by the proterstors or to arrest someone. But, some times it is without any reason. I believe it is a form of provocation from the police side.” Ismail explained.

She added that PIC observers had also witnessed police using foul language with the protesters and sometimes against them: “The police stop it once they realise we are commission observers,” she said.

Asked whether the release of statement reflected attempts by the other commission members to override her authority, PIC President responded: “I don’t think of it as overriding my authority, but they are are trying to undermine me.”

She further claimed that the statement was backed by the commission members who seem to be “biased in favour of the police”. She did not name anyone.

As the watchdog body of the police, Shahinda emphasised that PIC should not take sides between the police and the people, and must always prioritise the role of overseeing whether the police actions were within legal boundaries, and if not, provide instructions of what needed to be improved.

“When the PIC failsto inform police what needs to improved, the police officers who are acting unlawfully will see it as an encouragement to ignore the rule and regulations,” Shahinda contended.

Indicating that it was to late to retract the PIC statement, Ismail noted that the “damage is already done” and “police are likely to participate in further unlawful actions.”


32 thoughts on “PIC statement “not authorised by me”: PIC President”

  1. such a biased lady.
    no wonder this shahindar ismail is the sister of ibrahim ismail (ibra), the foul mouthed mdp traitor.

  2. Silly me, and I foolishly believed the original statement.
    Momentarily I thought the Independent Institutions are what they are called.
    Shame to see the same old system creeping in, but one good thing is at least the PIC president had the guts to speak out what she personally observed, and I think that's something positive.

  3. The dreds of dictatorship. Will take a long time to expunge these people. Thank you Hindha Ismail for standing up.

  4. Of course it is a lot easier to talk about improving the police than doing it. For the most part, police throughout the world are the same. And the same insights and direction for improving them hold true. To take a look at what I learned about improving police, read my new book and visit my blog, “Arrested Development: A Veteran Police Chief Sounds Off About Protest, Racism, Corruption and the Seven Steps Necessary to Improve Our Nation’s Police” (Amazon.com). And my blog is at http://improvingpolice.wordpress.com where I discuss these and other current police improvement issues. Good luck and may we all experience not just good but great policing!

  5. In the sense of human and and modern world, we the barbarian of Velocity is something like semi glass block. In the nation of world wide happy, we are upon the human right. what is devil of democracy? What is Evil of Autocracy? Simply the best of life is right. We are the boy Scouts can't you see? The answer is simple and Dimple of Happy. here we go. where we go. Every one will die and kill of murder. no matter of Happy and Sad. we are upon the right of democracy. Wassalaam Alaikum.

  6. Its OK if PIC President does not agree with what the majority members agree.
    But to say that this statement is 'unauthorised' just because it does not reflect her vew is an act I will call undemocratic.

  7. Anybody who speaks truth is in danger here in the Maldives which is becoming Iran on the atolls. A total travel ban must be enacted by the ic to prevent the use of foreign money to build the Gayoom caliphate. Let us see the junta survive on tuna export income alone.

  8. Independent institutions in the country seriously need to be strengthened in order to ensure the interests of the public in our newly introduced system of governance.

    Take for example, the Police Integrity Commission which has largely remained dormant over the past few years until now.

    First and foremost, the persons appointed to head the governing boards of autonomous institutions must possess the qualifications, skills, experience and social standing to engender trust among the public.

    Take the case of Ms. Shahinda Ismail for example. While I will not join the majority in attacking her based on her family's political affiliations I must point out that several doubt her credibility because of the fact that she is;
    - young
    - possesses only a diploma in marketing
    - has no experience either in government or outside to warrant her appointment to the post of Chairing a board that sets the policy to oversee the conduct of police in the country.

    The list of persons who by virtue of their lackluster backgrounds and poor standing in society, render their posts ineffective is long and cannot be provided in this forum.

    I hope Ms. Shahinda Ismail will forgive my statements here. Yet If she truly cared for this nation she would step back from her post and wait until she can build the respect and authority to fill the shoes that as yet outsize her.

    As for her stand on the issue, if the PICs rules of procedure allow for an individual member to go public with a dissenting view that in effect casts doubt on the institution altogether, then Ms. Shahinda Ismail has not violated any law. However morally and professionally she should not have done so even if she disagreed with the actions of the PIC. As the Chairman of its governing board she should be the person most concerned about how the public see the PIC.

    Yet there it is. A headline for us all to boggle at while the State crumbles to pieces around us. Thank you Ms. Shahinda Ismail, thank you all.

  9. @LOL she's the president of the PIC don't you think she has to sign off on a report regardless of if all the members agree or not? Not signing off and it being released in her absence warrants objection on her part I think.

  10. @shuddup minivan news is crazy as the commenters, ask them who started the newspaper, and when they were just a newspaper, who bought them the equipment?
    and then we can see the bias

  11. @International Observer,

    looks like you are one big bloody fool. When you impose a travel ban its not going to hurt Gayoom, his cronies or resort owners. They have the menas to survive for the next two generations without any income at all. It will hurt the poor people in the islands and their families who are barely surviving on their very low incomes.

    Dont comment on things that you dont know. This country is going through a bitter clan rivalry between thugs loyal to two extremely arrogant and selfish cult leaders ie Maumoon Gayoom and Mohamed Nasheed.

  12. The police are a foreign occupational force from MORDIS, and should be treated as such. As for the PIC, they can surrender, or face the firing squad.

  13. @ tsk tsk
    Being young does not automatically disqualify a person from holding public office. Some of the greatest leaders were young.
    I wish more young Maldivians will stand up for their rights and speak out against tyranny.

  14. Shahinda you have made a fool of yourself by speaking this time. But thanks. We now know how big an idiot you are.

  15. @tsk tsk

    Let's see. Shahindha is not fit for the job because she is young. You would of course say so. You people still believe that old MAG is young at heart and fit for presidency!! She is not fit because she only has a diploma. Shall we take a look at the rest of the members on the commission.

    Abdulla Waheed - A surgeon who never served at a Maldivian Hospital after the state sponsored his education. Yes, he must fit your age range.

    Haalaa Hameed - A doctorate in GENDER STUDIES. How very suitable. Since old age attracts you, must be fine too.

    Ahmed Aslam - DIPLOMA. He is a dinosaur from the Gayyoom era. So should he Chair the commission then!

    Ali Nadheem - yet another DIPLOMA. Below the age of 30. What does that mean now? Halfway in?

    Dear Tsk Tsk it is neither age nor a doctorate that is important. It is the passion and experience that does. Did you forget about all those years that Ms Shahindha spent working on policing issues from an NGO? The years of work with torture victims, her experience at international fora on policing and human rights? More importantly, as an employee about who actually gets any work done at the commission while most of the members spent half days doodling at the desks? You seriously need an eye-opener now don't you.

  16. this will get really ugly in about 6 and a little more years God willing.

    And you are all to blame

  17. You mean Shahindha's post at the Detainee Network for which she never applied or never went through any process to get in?

    You mean the same Detainee Network that was basically set up and run from Sri Lanka by Jude Lang who acted as Mohamed Nasheed's lawyer at some stages and an adviser to the MDP at others? The Detainee Network that overnight, transformed into the Democracy Network after Nasheed assumed the Presidency and through Ms. Shahinda Ismail's so-called hard work out the window?

    The Detainee Network through which Shahinda Ismail never succeeded in bringing about any concrete structural reforms? Perhaps it is that NGO you are referring to.

    A diploma in Marketing and a political placement inside an NGO by your friends does not actually qualify you to head a State institution. It only serves to justify your friend's appointment on paper to some degree. Yet not to the standards required by other modern democracies. As for Nadheem he is also unqualified with his questionable legal certification and weak experience (please note that the same Nadheem whom you pointed out as just a DIPLOMA worked with fellow DIPLOMA-holder Shahinda Ismail in Detainee Network). I told you the list of people who do not deserve to be in those posts are very long and it is not about Qayyoom or Nasheed. Qayyoom's first Supreme Court bench was also full of atrocious choices like Mujthaz Fahmy. We must pressure any leader who assumes the Presidency to appoint persons to these Commissions based on their contributions to their respective fields and age and experience.

    Attack me personally all you want. AGE and EXPERIENCE are demanded in democracies abroad as well for posts such as this.

  18. @Dear Enough;

    See this is exactly the problem with our country.

    We will take up weapons to defend our friends when they get appointed to high posts because we love them.

    Yet emotional attachments should not color our choices in these matters. And also just because you would fight to the death to defend your friend's good fortune does not mean that the rest of the public will have those same affections for Shahinda Ismail or any of those who are appointed on a questionable basis to these posts.

    The right way to do this is to make appointments that will ensure public confidence in those posts. For example, look at Ahmed Mujthaba. His age, experience and social standing would ensure a great degree of confidence in any post he heads.

  19. So this means all these days the commission decisions were influenced by the Chair alone and not by majority of the commission...

  20. Enough is right. It doesnt matter if Shahidha only has o-levels or is illiterate. She was appointed by the Majilis.

    However, spending years with Torture victims automatically biases her against every policeman in the country. Most torture victims are criminals in jails, and all criminals have one thing in common, their hate for the rule of law, courts and police (the people who catch them ! If i raped somebody and then a cop arrested me, then i would bear a grudge against all cops for life, naturally i would conjure all talks of stories to people like shahindha about police brutality in arresting me).

    Didnt the Majilis know that by electing somebody who was going to be biased against police from the start to the Police Integrity commission would have catastrophic consequences ?

    A woman who hasnt even seen the inside of police building throughly, who hasnt dealt with criminals, who hasnt been into contact with the daily stress of working on solving crimes, the risks involved in controling protests and armed confrontations while restraining your angers and emotions.

    No, she was merely a political appointtee with no knowlege of the maldives police service, merely a member of the ruling elite of the MDP.

    Naturally every action and decision she takes will be against every law enforcing policeman. Laws are nuisances to criminals, and people who have spent so much time with criminals will always be sided with criminals and against law enforcement people.

    Even if a protestor struck a policeman with a pavement brick right in front of Shahindha, and other policeman started to arrest the brickthrower Shahindha would only say "POLICE BRUTALITY ! , POLICE ARE USING VIOLENT MEANS TO ARREST A PROTESTOR".

    People like her make me sick.

  21. LOL on Thu, 2nd Aug 2012 10:03 PM

    mate you seems to have really listened to what the real commenter on the name "LOL" have said. good luck to u. keep up the good work. Im afraid no one gives a damn about your thoughts.

    thank you!

  22. Does it have to be "authorised by me"? Wish you have written about the role of a PIC president, whether s/he's have to abide by the ruling of the majority or not etc. If the rest of the commission members did this behind Shahida's back she should resign or take action against them.

    If not, if its a based on a majority ruling, then she should take the public slack for it.

  23. How on earth is qualification sufficient when the so called 'qualified' seeks cash despite the highest pay through the public coffers.

    It is madness to be obsessed with qualification when the person is experienced, credible and worthy of public confidence.

    People living in the past unable to think out of the box will always be enslaved in the status quo. Liberate the minds to think right, do right and observe the right. The guys need to remove the blinkers on the their eyes.

  24. Shahinda, you are there to chair the meetings. After the commission deliberates on an issue, a vote is taken. Majority view is the commission's view.Shahinda as chair and member will have one vote. Shahinda, for God's. Sake you cannot veto the majority decision. You are not the dictator of the commission. You are merely the chair.
    Grow up Shahinda,
    Shahinda,don't be biased in favour of MDP just becoz your brother is MDP big shot and have been showered with gifts and millions of Rufiya from Anni when he was the president.

  25. @Maldiviancitizen,

    Totally agree with you but still have to consider the instances of brutality by police(a few that i can count)on feb 8th which, if you consider my opinion, should not have happened.

    It definitely lead to a lot of people(mostly from the MDP)demeaning respect for the police force.

    However, if you examine the actions from MDP and the way nasheed behaved(who incidentaly had time to chat and laugh with a bunch of thugs from the baibalaa league(which the police was retaining to give permission to play) and resisted meeting the parents from a school,well! then who's to blame???

  26. @maldiviancitizen;

    Enough took my words out of context.

    The word qualified does not mean a certification only. My original criticism of Shahinda's appointment to the post actually made the point that you have repeated in your post.

    That is, she lacks the experience within government and outside to know the workings of the institution which she is mandated to head.

    Public confidence is the key here. A piece of paper alone does not instill confidence in a person but it does contribute when coupled with the requisite experience.

    It DOES matter whether Shahinda is an O'level graduate who completed her exams last year because an O'level graduate would not have had access to the institutions and situations within which she would gain the experience you have mentioned. A degree of professional qualification would be a given for a person of the experience you have described.

    Anyhow I agree with you wholeheartedly as that is the original point I was trying to get across. Shahindha lacks credibility and to be fair to her several others in the independent institutions do as well.

    This is because political parties were only interested in exploiting these institutions for their own gain and did not serve the public interest by putting forward suitable candidates. Also Parliament continues to refuse to vet these candidates through a credible process.

    It would be ideal if, next time, candidates are vetted through publicly aired interviews and subjected to technical questions in their relevant areas. Ideally the Supreme Court justices should be vetted through a similar process as well.

    Once more I apologize to Ms. Shahinda Ismail for dragging her name through the mud like this. Yet it comes with the business doesn't it Hindha?

  27. Obviously Shahonda will not agree anything against MDP since her entire family is MDP activists and they have got undue advantages when Anni was in power.

    The other thing is Shahinda herself will not be able to decided and it has to be the majority and we need to respect for the majority decision.

  28. @tsk tsk

    Can you tell us what you think of Azra as the Chair of the Human Rights Commission? What are her credentials?

  29. This is what your famous coup government used our economy for !!!!

    Leaked documents seen by the Daily Mail suggest she was paid £75,000 for two weeks’ work advising the regime on avoiding further action by the Commonwealth, which has raised serious concerns about a string of human rights abuses

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2183394/Baroness-Scotland-paid-7-500-A-DAY-advise-Maldives-coup-leader-accused-torture.html#ixzz22YfI1CZF

  30. @Hassan:

    I sincerely believe that Qayyoom's first appointment, Ahmed Mujthaba, was and is the best man to head the HRCM.

    However he himself left after realizing that the institution is compromised.

    Solution? Remove the compromising arrangements and better people will queue up for these jobs.

    Currently these posts are for puppets and career politicians.

  31. @tsk tsk

    I would get my facts right if I were pretending to be such a know-all as you. Just because you would spend amounts of time backing the coup leaders run an independent institution does not mean you know what you talk about or that it matters to you. I am not about to go into detail about her role in the Detainee Network or how she came to work there, or who she worked with.

    The truth of the matter is that the Parliament deliberated, just like you say that PIC does, on the matter of appointing Shahindha to the Commission and by majority voted for her. You find this hard to handle, yet you talk of majority and democracy. Such shame comes upon people like you with verbal diarrhea.

    I shall leave my comment here. Let us see how well the Commission fares without the "authority" of it's leader?


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