Reference No: 07/02/2013
13 February 2013
MDP Condemns Politically Motivated Court Order to Arrest President Nasheed
The Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) strongly condemns the arrest warrant for President Mohamed Nasheed issued by the Hulhumale’ Magistrate Court to summon him for the second hearing on the case of Judge Abdulla Mohamed. The MDP reiterates its belief that the arrest warrant and the charges against him are politically motivated and calls on the international community to remain vigilant and immediately intervene to ensure a free and fair trial for President Nasheed.
President Nasheed’s legal team was informed by the Maldives Police Services that the court order was issued to arrest President Nasheed and summon him to the court on 13 February 2013. However, the court has not yet informed him or his legal team of the scheduled hearing.
The second hearing of the case was scheduled on 10th February 2013 while President Nasheed was on an official visit to India and was unable to return to Male’ due to a medical emergency. The lawyers informed the court in writing as stated in the court’s regulations. According to the regulations, if the accused is unable to attend the hearing and after informing the court, documentation must be provided to the court within 2 working days. While time frame to produce the documents has not even passed, and when the documents were being processed, the court issued an arrest warrant on President Nasheed on 11th February 2013. The courts also have an option to fine the accused (MVR 75) for failing to appear before court.
“This highlights, once again, how biased the Hulhumale’ Magistrate Court is against President Nasheed. This illegal court has no interest in the rule of law, it exists merely to serve the political aims of its paymasters. This trial is a thinly veiled attempt by Dr Wadeed, in cahoots with his friends in the judiciary, to prevent President Nasheed from contesting in the upcoming presidential elections. The regime is fearful of President Nasheed’s popularity, so they are pulling out all the stops to prevent his name appearing on the ballot paper. These forceful measures by the Court are contrary to their usual practice” said MDP spokesperson Hamid Abdul Ghafoor MP.