Statement condemning political predation by Maldives Police Service, the Prosecutor General and the Criminal Court

Following incidents on the uninhabited island of Hondaidhoo on 16 November 2012, the Police raided that island and after brutally assaulting me and people with me, we were later taken to Kulhudhuffushi Police station and a criminal investigation was conducted. Following these incidents, the Prosecutor General had forwarded a case for trial to the Criminal Court citing contravention of points one and two of article 123 of Law No: 2011/17 (Law on Drugs), alleging refusal to provide a urine sample.

Hearings of the said case are ongoing and continue to be scheduled and I have been attending the Court as per subpoenas. However as deliberations of the 5th sitting of the 3rd session of Peoples Majlis (parliament) would be ongoing at 1300Hrs of 23 October 2013, and as a summons for that time would be in contravention of Powers and Privileges Act of Peoples Majlis, I had forwarded a letter requesting the Court to reschedule the case for an alternate time or day. I have not received a response to that letter to date. Also, the Peoples Majlis Secretariat had informed the Criminal Court that a sitting that require my attendance would be ongoing on that date.

Law No: 2013/5, Powers and Privileges Act of Peoples Majlis was ratified by the President and came into effect on 12 March 2013. Article 11 of that Law stipulates that a member of parliament shall not be summoned by a Court of Law or any other institution in a manner that would obstruct an official function, Committees and Sittings of the Peoples Majlis (parliament).

Issuing a subpoena obstructing attendance to a sitting of the Peoples Majlis (parliament) to a respondent who is required to attend was an action taken in direct contravention of Article 11 of Law No 2013/5 by the Criminal Court. Also, issuing subsequent Court orders to present me in Court under custody of the Maldives Police Service, without informing me a decision on my letter that described reasonable cause for my inability to attend at the time given on the summons, therefore are unlawful. Article 5 of judicial procedures states that a Court may requisition the Maldives Police Service to present a respondent in Court under their custody only in the instance of that respondent not attending Court without reasonable cause, after receiving subpoena. I was unable to attend due a reasonable cause and after making necessary notification to the Criminal Court that my attendance to Court would directly contravene a Law passed by the Peoples Majlis (parliament). I was unable to attend Court due to a reasonable legal constraint.

In the matter of allegations of my refusal to provide a urine sample, Article 7 of regulations on procuring, transferring and testing urine samples state that an instruction to submit a urine sample should be made to a respondent through an official requisition form. At no time was I presented the form stipulated in that article. I have not been instructed to provide a urine sample at any time as per regulations.

At the hearing of the case held on 09 October 2013, the prosecution (state) lawyer had repeatedly failed to respond to my lawyer’s query whether I was instructed to provide a urine sample through an official requisition form as per regulations.

Therefore, this is an irrelevant and unsubstantiated case of political predation by the Maldives Police Service, the Office of the Prosecutor General and the Criminal Court, in direct contravention and disregard to official procedures and laws.

Hamid Abdul Ghafoor MP
Henveiru South, Male’
MDP Spokesperson International Affairs.