President Waheed complains to Canada over Foreign Minister’s “inappropriate remarks”, “harshly worded questions”

President Mohamed Waheed has written a letter of complaint to Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, accusing Canada’s Foreign Minister John Baird of making “inappropriate and derogatory remarks” towards Acting Foreign Minister Mariyam Shakeela during the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG)’s meeting on September 27.

The Commonwealth’s human rights and democracy arm had “expressed concern at developments” in the Maldives following the Supreme Court’s delay of the run-off elections, noting the Commonwealth election observation team’s assessment that “this was a credible electoral process and met the standards for democratic elections to which Maldives has committed itself.”

The Supreme Court meanwhile last night annulled the election in a 4:3 decision, citing a secret police report on alleged electoral irregularities and ordering fresh elections on October 20 with enhanced police and government involvement.

In his letter to Prime Minister Harper, Waheed complained that Baird “posed several harshly worded questions… concerning domestic politics in the Maldives”, and said these “put unnecessary pressure on an otherwise excellent relationship” between the Maldives and Canada.

Shakeela represented the Maldives at the CMAG meeting, “and advocated on the need for reforming the Group in order to make the body a more effective and credible one that can help, not hamper, democracy consolidation in the Commonwealth member countries,” according to a Foreign Ministry statement.

“The Minister also highlighted on the need for the CMAG to take matters in proper context, and not to over-react on delicate situations in member countries,” it said.

The diplomatic spat has been widely reported by a bemused Canadian media.

Baird’s office responded to Waheed’s complaint by pointing out “the irony of the Acting Foreign Minister of the Maldives representing that country at CMAG, when her President received five percent of the vote in the first round of the election. Perhaps that is where President Waheed took offence.”

“It might have also been when Minister Baird pointed out to CMAG members that the second round of elections were ‘suspended’ under mysterious circumstances and called on Maldivian officials to proceed with the second round of elections without delay,” said Baird’s Spokesperson Rick Roth, in a statement.

“We believe that this delay is troublesome and can only lead to more instability; which is exactly what we have seen in recent days. The Minister believes that countries within the Commonwealth should adhere to a certain standard of values and principles which is clearly lacking in the Maldives,” the statement read.

“Canada supports the people of the Maldives, and that judicial authorities and security forces must not unduly delay the expression of their democratic will,” it concluded.

Baird has pushed for the Maldives to be placed on CMAG’s formal agenda. Following the group’s meeting in New York, Baird joined Maldivian pro-democracy demonstrators for a photo outside the Australian consulate.

Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird with Maldivian demonstrators

29 thoughts on “President Waheed complains to Canada over Foreign Minister’s “inappropriate remarks”, “harshly worded questions””

  1. Its not difficult to recognise a bully when you see one. Birds of a feather flock together.

  2. Waheed should sent the letter to the Queen of England who is the head of Canada.

    As a Heads of state, Waheed should not have bypassed the protocol

  3. Waheed airing his own dirty laundry for the whole world to see. The first statement the govt put out said things went very well, now Waheed comes out with a complaint letter showing things didn't go as well as they claimed at first. Canadian foreign minister was perfectly right,it's hilarious and unbecoming that this country continues to be represented by Waheed and his govt, when they came to power via a coup and Waheed got only 5% of votes in the elections.

  4. """ Shakeela represented the Maldives at the CMAG meeting, “and advocated on the need for reforming the Group in order to make the body a more effective and credible one... """

    Shakeela should have an audience with the Queen as the Head of the Commonwealth and put forward an action plan to reform the centuries old organisation whose members exceed 2.2 billion people. She should bring the despicable nature of CMAG to Her Majesty's attention.

    Indeed, Maldives is well placed to lead the mentioned reform, with extensive experience of an "indigenous" and totally new brand of democracy ushered in by its former statesman Gay Yoom, after 30 years of careful deliberation. You wouldn't find a model democracy like that anywhere else in the world, however hard you may try.

    The Maldives has the perfect example of an exemplary judiciary. Other nations may have under-educated and ill mannered justices and adulterers within their judicial bodies. Not so in the Maldives. Our highly respected justices are mostly educated in Makkah where they learned the strict and spartan ways of life laid down by Allah alone and His Prophet Mohammed. I'm sure Her Majesty will be highly interested in ensuring the rest of the Commonwealth follows this example.

    Yes, the Maldives is THE model nation of the Commonwealth of Nations.

  5. A bit late to complain about his reputation eh. Can't change the facts and no need to sugar coat anything to protect his feelings when he doesn't give a damn about the feelings of the people of Maldives. What a cry baby really!

  6. Baird is the MAN! We shall build statues of Baird once democracy returns to our country.

  7. So he complains to Mr. Harper about Mr. Baird - well, boo hoo. Does he really think that Stephen Harper gives a lump of dogs**t about that?

  8. 5% is such a cry baby....and @Perdona ..please learn a bit more about Canadian politics. The Queen maybe the head of state of Canada and the Commonwealth, but this is a democractic country and an institution where she does not choose the cabinet, unlike Golhaa Maumoon choosing a cabinet from him off springs. Mr Baird or any other foreign dignitary has every right to criticize other heads of States..what was observed at CMAG was a fact. Waheed should just suck it up and stop whinging like a baby...

  9. What exactly is Mr.Baird's interest in Maldivian domestic issues ? We ought to question his country why they insist on Mr.Justin Bieber being called a 'Musician'.

  10. When Nasheed was the President the Maldives voted in favour of the vote that was taken over the accusation of atrociites in Sri Lanka. Today Canada is threatening to stop funding the Commonwealth accusing Sri Lanka of atrocities. But this foreign minister Johan Baird is a strong supporter of Israel. Read on the internet about his support for Isreal. Why would John support Nasheed? Nasheed may have bravery in the face of Maldivians. But in the face of foreign countries he is very "fidi". If a reporter ask something he may say anything just to please them (even if it is to say something that may hurt Maldivians). So John Baird may think it would be easier to make Nasheed a puppet compared to other leaders in South Asia and in the Muslim countries, and also among small island developing states.

  11. It is not just that he doesn't give a damn for the people's feelings. He is meant to be the president of this nation for god's sake! What the hell was he doing and is doing when a corrupt judiciary derailed an election process because a rich,ignorant and spoilt candidate forced them to do so? What is he doing when the police refuces to give protection to a TV station. Even if the station belong to members of his opposition, he should be concerned with the possible damage it may do to innocent people close to the building. He is paid (with our money) to protect and serve the nation.When was the last time he tried to protect and serve the people of Maldives?
    Waheed. You are an utter failure and when we have time to focus on you, after we have regained the rights that are ours by right, we will deal with you.
    At least the Canadian minister had the guts to stand up for what he believes in. When was the last time you thought of any thing other than yourself?

  12. My god! This man is really the senior-most diplomat in a country like Canada?

    I guess its not just our politicians who are forced to make ill-advised appointments.

    As for Waheed yes he is the head of an interim government kept in place because of the chaotic transfer of power on 7 February 2012 and yes he suffered an embarrassing defeat at the polls HOWEVER I have never heard such childish schoolyard taunting from a diplomat in my whole life.

    Those Minivan-frequenters who will no doubt attack my comment purely on the basis of Baird's pro-MDOP stance, please ask a former diplomat or just refer to India's behavior during this time when the current Government has treated them like an unwelcome guest at sweet sixteen and tell me if this guy did a good job considering the post he holds.

  13. @Bitter Truth on Tue, 8th Oct 2013 7:00 PM

    "What exactly is Mr.Baird’s interest in Maldivian domestic issues ?"

    That one's easy to answer: Bringing democracy to the far flung corners of the Commonwealth of Nations.

  14. Waheed should send that letter to the Saudi king who is the father of World terrorism

  15. Miss @Addu bin Suvaadeeb.

    You say its 'easy to answer: Bringing democracy to the far flung corners of the Commonwealth of Nations'

    Its ok if Miley Cyrus wriggles her tongue , but you are the queen of comments in Minivan. If your view is these dirty politions are out for democracy. God forbid.

    They all want money - COLD HOT CASH or influence.
    Maumoon, Nasheed, Shaheed, Kerafaa, Zaki, Mausoom, Munnawar, Shahid.. none of them id after democracy.. And John Bird.. Dont make us laugh. He would not be be able to spot a maldives map even if he sees one. The man is probably currying a favour to his British friends..

    I suggest you start a singing carrer like Miley.. 🙂

  16. To Ahmad Bin Addu Bin Suvadheeb,

    Talking about democracy, that is what Hitler also talked. The Jews were a minority. He was able to convince the public that if he get to power, he would facilitate employment opportunities for the majority the ethic non jewish Germans. Democracy with majority does not give any certainty that the ruler or even the society are in support of justice. Look at the origin of democracy in the ancient Athenian state. Yes they did call its Demos and Cratos, so democracy. But they also defined "people". For them those women, mixed, serfs were not fit to be "people" in the demos and cratos. Maldives need a society that will strive for justice and betterment. The changes that were brought to Singapore to discipline were not due to so called democratic principles, but do what is right. Democracy is not a way for betterment, but morality is. It is lacking in this country (even with the politicians in all parties unfortunately).

  17. @ tsk tsk, it seems Shakeela started the taunting, very unbecoming way to behave. She held up a photo Canadian Fm had taken with demonstrates outside and said you are biased. Obviously Shakeela thinks this is a school playground where her friends should not talk to people she doesn't like. The details are in newspapers all over the world that is writing about this childish complaint by Waheed.

  18. I have a very simple question to Baird, what were you doing or what did you do when a real Coup took place in Egypt with the military killing thousands of civilians? Why didn't you have the guts to say that Egypt has an unelected illegitimate puppet leader who was picked by General Sisi?

    Answer is today's Canada can only play or try to play with smaller vulnerable tiny states like Maldives, that shows the actual and true size of Canada!

  19. Aw those demonstrators must truly be victims! Renting out their Male' homes for hundreds of thousands to the poor disgusting raajjetherey people while they live their terrible lives in western countries. Boo fucking hoo!

  20. One more thing,

    The photo is titled "Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird with Maldivian demonstrators"

    Another BIG FAT LIE!

    People you see are Mohamed Nasheed's cousin her husband and children, and the other lady is shiuna a former staff at Maldives Permanent Mission in NY.

    These are hardcore people of MDP and they only represent a political party, not the people of Maldives!

  21. @ Mr.Addu : You seem to believe in Democracy in like a little kid believes in Christmas.

  22. While Canada is striving to be the bastion of freedom and rights for the Maldivian people, let us take a minute to see how Canada responded to the Rohingya's in Myanmar.

    p.s It is also more saddening that NONE of our politicians could even say anything in the international media in regard to the sufferings of the Rohingyas.

  23. The Canadian government has come under fire for dismissing UN concerns over its human rights violations against the country's Aboriginals.



    Critics say whenever the Harper government comes under criticism at the UN, they try to deflect attention from it by focusing on the alleged human rights records of the states making the condemnations.

    Moral of the story is that people living in glass houses should not throw stones at each other.

  24. As a teenager Shakeela was believed to be possessed by a Jinnie. Is it happening again...

  25. Truth about Shakeela, Kanuhura and her husbands acts and deed shall come out on 19th Oct when Nasheed is pronouced winner.

    Do you want to know who are the Ladheenis or hypocrites, double faced Maldivians who abuse Nasheed while they engage is the worst acts against Islam and hunanity???

    Dont miss to read Minivan on 19th and 20th Oct. YOU WILL BE SHOCKED


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