The Adhaalath Party, led by State Islamic Minister Sheikh Hussein Rasheed, has claimed that the Religious Unity Act is in the hands of the leader of the Social Liberal Party (SLP), Ibrahim ‘Ibra’ Ismail.
”The Religious Unity Act, which the government has obstructed from being [published in the gazette] was drafted with the assistance of three Attorney Generals,” the Adhaalath Party said.
”According to the information we have, the Act was first drafted with the full assistance of former Attorney General Dhiyana Saeed, during the former administration.”
The Act was refined by Islamic Minister Dr Abdul Majeed Abdul Baari, Sheikh Hussein Rasheed, Head of Fiqh Academy Sheikh Ali Zahir Bin Saeed Gasim, Sheikh Ahmed Zahir, Sheikh Ahmed Saleem, the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) Religious Council’s former leader Sheikh ‘BA’ Naseem and Deputy Islamic Minister Mohamed Farooq before sending it to the President’s Office.
After receiving the draft Act, President Mohamed Nasheed held a meeting with Commissioner of Police Ahmed Faseeh, Sheikh Shaheem, Dr Baari and Sheikh Hussein Rasheed and recommended that the Act should be sent to then-Attorney General Husnu Suood before publishing in the gazette, said Adhaalath Party.
”Suood referred to the Act and brought some amendments, and removed many articles. He then said it was fine and sent it to be published on the gazette,” Adhaalth said. ”But then the President said there were some policy issues, discussed the matter in the cabinet, and sent it back to the Islamic Ministry requesting they solve those policy issues.”
After amending the draft, the Islamic ministry sent it to the current AG, Dr Ahmed Ali Sawad. The Ministry held a meeting with Sawad and again sent the draft to be published in the government’s gazette after adding his comments.
”While we were waiting for it to be published in the gazette, Ibra called from the President’s Office and said that he was now in charge of the Religious Unity Act, and that there were some amendments that should be brought to it,” the party said. ”Except for a few, he proposed amendments to all the articles in it.”
”This is now the status of the Religious Unity Act that was drafted by many religious experts and three attorney generals of the state.”
Press Secretary for the President, Mohamed Zuhair, said today that the new regulations would be published in the gazette ”hopefully by next week.”
”Ibra is now discussing the draft with the Islamic Ministry and other concerned authorities,” said Zuhair. ”There are many government authorities that are related to the new regulations.”
The government have to research whether there will be any obstacle in implementing any regulation in three ways, Zuhair said.
”We have to study whether there will be any legal, social or economic obstacles to its implementation,” he said, insisting that Ibra was not deliberately delaying publication of the Act in the government’s gazette.