Civil Court orders halt to seizure of lands allocated to Gasim’s Villa company

The Civil Court has ordered the Ministry of Tourism halt all proceedings regarding the seizure of uninhabited islands and lagoons granted to Villa Hotels and Resorts Private Limited.

Villa – owned by Jumhooree Party (JP) leader MP Gasim Ibrahim – requested the stay order after the government’s decision to hand back the uninhabited islands and lagoons given to the company as compensation for the nationalisation of several development projects, including Kadhdhoo airport

According to the order, although the government has said Villa can be compensated for the seizure of the islands and lagoons, the areas were handed over due to the government’s inability to bear the burden of a financial or monetary compensation.

The islands and lagoons that had been ordered to be returned are Thaa Atoll Elaa, Raa Atoll Maanenfushi, Gaafu Dhaal Atoll Gazeera, Kaafu Atoll Maadhihgaru lagoon, and Vaavehdhi lagoon.

Speaking at a joint rally of JP and Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP), Gasim stated that “the Maldivian people will not allow injustice” and reiterated calls for the charges against MDP leader and former President Mohamed Nasheed to be dropped.

“Forget it, nobody can push us back, we will be in the service of the Maldivian people. We will defend the fundamental rights and freedoms of the constitution”, Gasim said.

The JP’s opposition to key government legislation last year saw Gasim suffer setbacks to his businesses, as well as physical threats against his person – both of which the party blamed on Gasim’s former political allies.

“You can seize everything, take it. Take it. After all, things can only be taken from people who have them,” he told attendees of the joint rally of Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) and JP held on February 5, 2015.

“Yameen, do not think that a well-built man can come and shoot me with a gun. No, No, No. I am not afraid even one bit.”

President Abdulla Yameen has denied Gasim’s business reversals were a result of political events, stating that all businesses were treated equally under the law.

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Nasheed predicts he will soon be jailed

Opposition Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) leader and former President Mohamed Nasheed has predicted that he will be jailed in the upcoming weeks.

Speaking at the party’s 129th National Council sitting last night (February 10) Nasheed stated that although he will be very saddened to leave his family and worldly pleasures, he is determined to patiently bear the pain and “if necessary, even torture”.

“Nevertheless, with your permission, I would like to spend my jail days as the president of this party”, Nasheed said, requesting that the party “try and free me as soon as possible” and to “try and find a way in which I could be saved without being sentenced”.

Nasheed’s challenge of the composition of the Hulhumalé Magistrates Court bench was rejected on jurisdictional grounds on Monday (February 9), paving the way for the court to resume his trial for the January 2012 detention of Criminal Court Judge Abdulla Mohamed.

Nasheed has described judicial proceedings as being influenced by the government, making them “unfair”, alleging that the government’s intention was to sentence him before the new Penal Code is implemented in April, 2015.

Nasheed’s legal team has subsequently submitted the case to the Civil Court, again challenging the composition of the Hulhumalé court bench. The first hearing of the case is scheduled at Civil Court today at 4pm.

In last night’s meeting held to discuss the steps that need to be taken by the MDP in defending the Constitution, Nasheed also said that more than 10 parliament members from the ruling Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) are discussing switching to the opposition alliance.

The MDP and Gasim Ibrahim’s Jumhooree Party (JP) signed an agreement during a mass rally last Thursday (February 5) night to “defend the spirit of the Constitution and do everything necessary to guarantee the rule of law”.

The agreement pledges to prevent the passing of any propositions in the People’s Majlis against the letter or the spirit of the Constitution, both inside and outside of the Majlis. Currently, the two parties control 34 seats in the 85-seat legislature.

The MDP National Council also decided last night to pass a motion submitted by Villimalé constituency president Mohamed Ibrahim Manik to lift the disciplinary measures preventing MPs who had violated the party’s whip line from participating in votes taken in the party’s internal bodies.

It was also decided that Anas Abdul Sattar be appointed as the party’s secretary general.

Nasheed stated that the joint parliamentary group to be formed under the MDP-JP agreement will strive towards appointing Maamigili MP Gasim to post of speaker of parliament.

Gasim’s decision to stand for the position last May prompted the end of his party’s alliance with the PPM, though the JP did not officially sever ties until late last month.

Nasheed also assured that, if and when the alliance gains the majority, the current composition of independent institutions, such as the Judicial Services Commission, will be changed.

“I will be even more active from block C of Maafushi Jail,” concluded Nasheed.

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MDP and JP announce representatives to Inter Party Commission

The opposition Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) and Jumhooree Party have announced their representatives in the Inter Party Commission to be formed under the new agreement signed in defence of the Constitution.

MDP representatives in the commission will be party leader and former President Mohamed Nasheed, Chairperson Ali Waheed, Parliamentary Group leader Ibrahim Mohamed Solih, MP for Machchangoalhi Uthuru Mariya Ahmed Didi, MP for Henveiru Uthuru Abdulla Shahid, MP for Hithadhoo Uthuru Mohamed Aslam, and Malé City Mayor Mohamed Shihab.

Meanwhile, reported that the JP will be represented by party leader MP Gasim Ibrahim, Vice President Ameen Ibrahim, Abdulla Kamaludeen, MP Ilham Ahmed, MP Abdulla Riyaz, MP Hussain Mohamed, and MP Ali Hussain.

According to the agreement, the Inter Party Commission, to be formed with the Inter Party Parliamentary Group within 10 days of the signing of the agreement, must consist of each party’s leader.

The commission has the authority to formulate the rules under which the Inter Party Parliamentary group will function and is mandated primarily “to oversee and decide on the course of action required to accomplish the purpose of the agreement”.