President and inquiry commission pass responsibility for reforming CNI

President Dr Mohamed Waheed Hassan on Wednesday claimed that it is was up to the Commission of National Inquiry (CNI) to allow new members in its investigation of the controversial transfer of power on February 7, while the commission insists that it cannot self-enact changes to its composition.

Speaking at a press conference this afternoon, Waheed contended that it was upto the commission to “allow new members” to join the investigation.

“It is a matter that commission has to decide on. I met with the commission’s president and mentioned it. Even though I had appointed the commission, I have said that it is an independent commission. I do not criticise or oversee their work,” Waheed observed. “I am open to work as they commission want.”

However, when contacted by Minivan News on April 17, a spokesperson for the CNI said that the commission was itself unable to enact changes to its composition.

“The CNI was set up by the president, so it will be for the government to discuss this [CMAG’s findings],” the spokesperson said.

The CNI was set up by Dr Waheed Hassan to investigate the controversial change of power on February 7 which the ousted Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) maintains was a coup d’état orchestrated by remnants of the former dictatorship, funded by several resort interests and carried out by mutinous police and military units.

However, the commission’s credibility has been challenged by both local NGOs and the Commonwealth which has urged the government “to review immediately the composition and terms of reference of the Commission to make it genuinely independent, credible and impartial.”

According to Waheed, discussions on reforming the CNI are underway, but stopped short from giving a date on when the changes will be finalised. The government-set deadline for producing the final inquiry report is May 31.

“Talks are underway on reforming the Inquiry Commission. But no decisions have been made yet. We will inform as soon as decisions are finalised,” Dr Waheed told the press.

Responding to Waheed’s remarks, Aiman Rasheed, Project Coordinator at Transparency Maldives today contended that the “changes should have been made months back”.

Transparency Maldives, Maldivian Democracy Network, Democracy House, and the Maldives NGO Federation, itself representing 59 organisations, joined forces to push for “immediate changes to the Commission of National Inquiry (CNI) so that it gains public trust and confidence and is able to achieve its objectives.”

“To put it simply, the commission was established by a presidential decree. Therefore any changes to the commission’s mandate, composition or scope of investigation can only be made by the president himself,” Aiman pointed out.

He observed that the government has failed to respond to the civil society’s requests to reform the mandate and scope of the CNI based on cross-party agreement.

“If the CNI completes its investigation with the current composition, it is bound to create further chaos,” Aiman concluded.

Waheed noted that he has spoken to the head of the commission over civil society’s request for observer status and added that the decision must be taken by the commission.

Meanwhile, CNI has come under fire from the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG) which released a statement last week giving the government four weeks to reform the body established to investigate the February 7 change of power lest CMAG consider “further and stronger measures”.

“The group was of the view that the Commission of National Inquiry, established to assess the events leading to the transfer of power on 7 February 2012, is not independent or impartial, and has failed to gain sufficient support in Maldives,” read the CMAG statement.

Subsequently, members of parliament backing President Waheed have called on the state to withdraw the country’s membership from the Commonwealth, during a debate on a resolution forwarded on Monday.

Newly sworn in Vice President Mohamed Waheed Deen claimed at the same press conference that allowing foreigners to intervene in the domestic affairs would be an an “attack on our independence and national sovereignty”.

However, Waheed today noted that the “government does not consider leaving Commonwealth” and added that the international organisation in which Maldives participates, can continue to make recommendations, but the decisions on the national matters “will be solely made by us”.  “We are not going to do whatever someone tells us to do.”

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23 thoughts on “President and inquiry commission pass responsibility for reforming CNI”

  1. good , common wealth does not have the right to interfere with our internal issue and if so they are trying to intervene our sovereign rights.

    common wealth objectiv is to have our legislation changed to allow religious freedom in Maldives and they are not looking at having this done within few months but rather looking at having this done in next 10 years time. Nasheed had promised them that he will ensure that it is done provided that he is able to stay in power for 10 years.

    Nasheed he has proven this by allowing Hilath and his gangs to gather near artificial beach calling for religious freedom in the country and Nasheed never took any action against them. Infect he had encouraged them .

    These things show both Nasheed and common wealth have same common objective and that is why common wealth is behind Nasheed.

    People of Maldives, need to wake-up and then stop following Nasheed corrupted ideology .

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  2. Mode speaks the truth! The commonwealth are engaged in a vile effort to force us to tolerate secularists, deviants, homosexuals, zionists and Christians amongst our numbers.

    Pay them no heed. No good can come from acquiescing to these imperialist designs.

    Indeed, they say that tolerance is the last virtue of a depraved society!

    Alhamdhulillaaah!

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  3. David (aka Dr Waheed) did not see that CMAG's remarks as meddling with the domestic affairs but his confidante(Dr Dean)see it as an attack on the national sovereignty. Can they both sing from a same hymn sheet?

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  4. Pass the buck... But where does it stop?? Waheed, you are biggest traitor this world has ever seen. Your current behaviour proves this was not just a coup, but that you were at the very helm of it. Screw you ass!

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  5. nasheed is not the one who distributed bibles here and converted several muslims its mammon who killed the religion that dangerous wicked man has to be brought to justice he has misguided a nation destroyed a nation with his family

    Hehe Waheed a puppet he doesn't need to be briefed by the commission its try that he don't have any influence on the commission its mammon and yameen who control the commission

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  6. Typical comment from coup man Mode. The evidence is overwhelming that it was a coup. Unless the is international participation it can not be fair. It is like asking a North Korean and a South Korean to agree on party politics.

    This is about a criminal act. Please do not go wobbly on us now CMAG.

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  7. Anyway the former president nasheed has rsign ed with presure of defence forces.in this way the power has changed not right way on 7 fe so, in this case can not be investigate any commision mads by waheed. I think common wealth can play good roll to investigate these matter. We are very small country we will depend other foreing country. Howerver, waheed can say anything what ever he want. But finally waheed will ask opinion from the common wealth.

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  8. @mode...You do know Hilath was arrested, and to this nations great shame those who attacked him were not. And as for what you accuse that gathering of, their is no record that they were calling for religious freedom. You need to seriously get out of this paranoid mindset, the entire world is not hellbent on converting maldivians. And by your logic the fact that US recognised this govt must mean Waheed agreed to build churches in the Maldives in the near future, after all it's we'll known how westernised Waheed and his VP Deen are and how their kids can barely speak English, while those two love to sip wine and visit temples n churches.

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  9. People of the Maldives needs to wake-up and then stop following Waheedh's brutal, uncivilized, cannibalistic and corrupt ideology.

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  10. That President Waheed lost no time in appointing a Commission of Inquiry, even if the circumstances dictated it was admirable.

    Who cannot see that no commission to investigate the 7th could be constituted in Maldives that would satisfy all the political parties concerned? The Government of Maldives has instituted a Commission and a deadline has been set for its report on its findings. It’s telling that the Commission’s report is being pre-judged even before it’s out. (The next step? ..YOU GOT IT!)

    Isn’t what really matters the final report itself? How transparent that report is? Are we to pass judgement on the findings? Or on its authors?

    Letting the Commission to find the exact mechanisms to ensure that its report is accepted by the greatest number of Maldivians is the first priority and a necessary first step in the Commissions own independence. In my opinion President Waheed’s stance is valid & correct, and the best way of ensuring the Commissions independence. As pointed out on many occasions there is no possibility of finding an educated & competent individual in Maldives who hasn’t got his political sympathies, and who has no stand on President Gayoom and President Nasheed. What next? Abdicate (is it the correct word?) our sovereignty?

    Things will not work, for Maldives until Maldives Sovereignty is respected by all and fundamentally that there is non-interference in its internal affairs. Isn’t this BASIC? It’s the Job of the President of Maldives and his Govt to ensure this. Being a small country with limited means this can only be achieved with great tact and astute diplomacy using the good offices of our neighbours and friends. Can President Waheed do it? Will Maldivians help him do it?

    I sometimes wonder how many of us Maldivians take seriously and appreciate the incredible threat to our way of live, that recent events point to. I wonder... why there is no urgency to meet this threat? Why is it that the we are not educated with any urgency to this looming threat? There was a mobilisation of the Maldivian collective to learn and take a stand about a few neighbouring countries idols – that correctly was just the tip of the ice-berg. Now when the threat is 10 times greater and we don’t even know the real extent of the problem ( like the bottom of the ice-berg), the parties, the scholars, the activists are all relatively silent. Why?

    Aren’t we digging our own graves?

    Politicians, who see their political survival, as only by pushing foreign designs and agendas, will naturally have the support of such foreign elements. It’s vital that the Government of Maldives is able to make full use of diplomacy and the traditional friends of Maldives to ensure the strategic survival of Maldives as what it has been over the past centuries. It’s vital that the Maldivians take a firm stand whilst there is still time and make their voice heard. Calmly in the Islamic traditions we hold dear, WITHIN THE LAW, in the spirit of brotherliness, love and peace.

    When will the political parties, the scholars & each Maldivian wake up to the dangers to their way of life? When will we Work to educate ourselves about these dangers. When will it begin?

    Aren’t the present indications that it wouldn’t begin before it’s too late!

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  11. wasnt the CNI instituted by waheed? then why cant he change its composition? puppetz much?

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  12. Hathi, US is not trying to interfere with our internal affairs while common wealth is ? this is the difference.

    Whteher you believe or not, Anni is a traitor and dictator and is a virus infected by common wealth.

    Didn't you know that Anni told US media that he had changed our school curriculum to weaken the Islamic believes ? These are some of the words that had come out from annie lost mouth.

    I am not fond of Waheed either and what happened on 7th Feb. is not the ideal things to happened i this country but we should understand and investigate what had caused to happened the incidence.

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  13. I support the stand of the NGOs regarding the national inquiry process. As a citizen, I don't know what happened on the seventh. I deserve to know. I also deserve to know in a credible manner that does not create further chaos. Additionally, there should not be any room for doubt in the inquiry. I do not believe instituting transparency and accountability mechanisms amount to loss of Maldivian sovereignty.

    Below are the positions of the NGOs. Read and be informed. I believe these points are worth promoting.

    1. Members of the Commission of National Inquiry must be persons of integrity accepted by parties on both sides of the political divide. Persons from institutions such as the Human Rights Commission of the Maldives, Anti Corruption Commission, Police Integrity Commission, Elections Commission may be nominated, and such an inquiry may be guided by the Prosecutor General’s Office.
    2. The mandate, scope and deadlines for the Commission of National Inquiry must be decided by agreement across the political divide.
    3. The commission must pool technical assistance from international community as a measure to increase credibility and expedite the process. It shall also strive to promote ownership of the process by all national stakeholders.
    4. Opportunity to observe the operations and procedures of the Commission must be open to relevant international actors, including the United Nations, the Commonwealth and the European Union, National Independent Institutions and civil society actors.
    5. The Commission must share the findings of the commission with the Parliament and independent state institutions.
    6. The Commission’s findings must be made public.
    7. The state must provide adequate resources and all state institutions must extend their cooperation as required to the Commission of National Inquiry.

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  14. Dear Hawwa Lubna,
    I watched yesterday's press conference that you refer to in this article. Interim President Waheed clearly mentioned the Prosecutor General, who he said is responsible for the revision of the composition of CNI.

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  15. "President Dr Mohamed Waheed Hassan on Wednesday claimed that it is was up to the Commission of National Inquiry (CNI) to allow new members in its investigation of the controversial transfer of power on February 7, while the commission insists that it cannot self-enact changes to its composition.".

    A load of bull-crap!

    It would have sounded better and unquestionable if it had been;

    "Neither NAZIM SO or MY MAN never did say that the composition of this commission could be changed" !!!!!!

    The more this Dr. speak, the more he is exposing his "puppet" image. What shame!

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  16. @Ahmad on Thu, 26th Apr 2012 7:42 AM

    "I sometimes wonder how many of us Maldivians take seriously and appreciate the incredible threat to our way of live, that recent events point to. I wonder…"

    Keep on wondering. The number of thieves, drug addicts, murderers, paedophiles, and all flavours of criminals are increasing on a daily basis. Those are direct and immediate threats to your existence.

    No outside organisation or country will stand idle whilst another country falls into a path which poses a threat to others. Maldives is headed towards such a path. Events during the last decade or so have changed the world.

    There's no one to listen to your cries of "sovereignty". Those feeble arguments just doesn't wash anymore! As has been said many times, if you don't like what the Commonwealth has to say, then leave it. Who is forcing you to stay in the Commonwealth?

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  17. I am just a puppet I don't know anything I don't oversee anything, I am just a puppet I cant decide anything. I am just a puppet president. What is wrong with this man? take come responsibility and get something done for God sakes

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  18. Hey Selfish guys!!!!! Commonwealth was there and the Maldives was there. too...why CMAG has called by holding an Election by the end of 2012 means the International Community and many, many Maldivians cannot blindly accept what has happened on February 7th.

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  19. Hey Selfish guys!!!!! Commonwealth was there and the Maldives was there. too…why CMAG has called by holding an Election by the end of 2012 means the International Community and many, many Maldivians cannot blindly accept what has happened on February 7th.

    Deen!!! can u remember how you got Bandos during Ahmed Zaki's administration??? People know your both sides my dear....don't try to be over-smart!!!

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  20. more blah blah and excuses from B Waheed. If they really wanted something solid from this CNI they wouldn't form the committee with these members.

    this is 'dhiulhi dhemun'

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  21. to everybody who commented on commonwealth commenting on our internal affairs, here are some things to ponder about.

    1. when we signed up to be a member of Commonwealth in 1985, we signed up to the Charter of commonwealth and the Principles which it upholds. The government of that time deemed that Charter to be in line with our constitution at the time and therefore we have been there since the new Constitutions in 1998 and 2008. It is true that each country has its own sovereignty and no other country can interfere it is. however, it is also true that when we sign up to follow and uphold obligations and responsibilities we should uphold it.

    2. the CMAG is a group of countries within the Commonwealth which monitors the implementation of the above-mentioned obligations of member states. The CMAG was formed and accepted by the Commonwealth countries. indeed Maldives was one of its most ardent supporters. All the countries made the commitment to listen to CMAG and allow it to comment on what they see as a deviation from the obligations and responsibilities as a Commonwealth country.

    Now, if the current government sees fit to leave the Commonwealth it may do so. But failing to uphold our end of the deal we signed onto when we signed to Commonwealth in the first place is an indicator that the fault lies with us sadly!

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