Committee to review HRCM nomination

A temporary committee will review President Mohamed Nasheed’s nomination of Ahmed Tholal of Henveiru Adduge for deputy human rights commissioner. Parliament endorsed the committee today with 66 out of 68 votes.

The President made the nomination on Sunday.

The committee includes Dhidhoo MP Ahmed Sameer, Machangoalhi-North MP Mohamed Rasheed, Madaveli MP Mohamed Nazim, Kela MP Dr Abdulla Mausoom, Hithadhoo-South MP Hassan Latheef, Velidhoo MP Ali Mohamed, and Maavashu MP Abdul Aziz Jamaal Abu Bakr.

The Human Rights Commission of the Maldives (HRCM) has been without a deputy president for over a year. On October 4, 2010 Parliament unanimously approved Mariyam Azra as HRCM President but rejected the President’s nominee Jeehan Mahmoud by ten votes.

A coalition of local NGOs called the vacant posts “an immense obstacle to the effective functioning of the commission” at the time.

MPs said they opposed Mahmoud’s nomination for reasons of gender equality.

DRP Deputy Leader Ilham Ahmed told Minivan at the time that while he considered the people appointed for HRCM as capable, the role of President and Vice President “should include a male.”

“Even if you look at it from a religious perspective or from the perspective of good policy, there should be a male in either post,’’ he said.

Independent MP for Kudahuvadhoo, Ahmed Amir, said it was “against human rights” to have two females in the roles of President and Vice President.

“It is the woman who calls for equality most of the time,’’ Amir said, regarding the case.