Administration’s aim is to work for the development and progress of the Maldivian nation – President Yameen

President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom has stated that the aim of the Government is to work for the development and progress of the Maldivian nation, with the belief that the truest measure of national development is the citizen’s happiness and contentment. The President made this remark while delivering this year’s Presidential Address tonight, at the opening session of the People’s Majlis for 2018.

In his address, the President highlighted that the Government’s focus has been on improving economic and social sectors while ensuring that citizens are able to live happy, independent lives, where they face no impediments to the fulfillment of their daily wants and needs. In this regard, he stated that this Administration has fulfilled unmet needs of the Maldivian people including through the completion of numerous development projects.

During the Presidential address, President Yameen shed light on the work carried out by this Administration. Likewise, he noted that last year, the first-ever technical assessment of crime in the country was undertaken and that the crime rate has reduced by 35% over the past four years. Moreover, the President said that ‘HIYA’ (‘Shelter’), the biggest housing project launched by the Government this year, and to be completed next year, is expected to provide housing to more than 160,000 people residing in the Maldives.

He further said that the 25-storey ‘Dharumavantha Hospital’ will open this year. Inclusive of a diagnostic center, it will provide new and improved health care services for the country.

During the Presidential address, President Yameen noted that more than 76,000 new jobs have been created for youth. He said that, this has been possible due to the growth of the economy. Additionally, the President highlighted infrastructure projects with regards to sports include the Sports Arena and game courts – 80% of the construction work of the Sports Arenas has been completed.
Concluding the address, President Yameen stated that the aims of the Administration include bringing vast investments to the Maldives and increasing the State’s ability to develop sustainably. He stated that it is also a priority to ensure public welfare and that the Administration aims to make the Maldives an upper-middle-income country.

Update on the Current Situation in the Maldives (20/02/2018): Parliamentary Standing Committee votes to extend State of Emergency easing Constitutional Restrictions

Parliamentary Standing Committee votes to extend State of Emergency easing Constitutional Restrictions

The Parliamentary Standing Committee on National Security yesterday voted to extend the State of Emergency by thirty days easing constitutional restrictions. The extension was submitted by the request of the President due to the present threat to national security and the constitutional crisis posed by the events leading up to and following the ruling issued by the Supreme Court on 1 February 2018. The request by the President for an extension of the State of Emergency was deliberated by the Parliament yesterday.

The Committee also decided that under the State of Emergency, the following Articles of the Constitution would no longer be restricted upon its extension:

1. Article 100 (Removal of the President or Vice President)
2. Article 101 (Vote of no confidence for a Member of the Cabinet)
3. Article 113 (Jurisdiction of the Supreme Court on the Impeachment of the President)
4. Article 228 (Removal of the Prosecutor General from office)

The Government also notes that while the Oppositions MPs did not attend the Session in Chamber yesterday, Opposition MPs joined the debate in Committee.

President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom, on 5 February 2018 declared a State of Emergency by Presidential Decree No. 2018/3, under Article 253 of the Constitution of the Republic of Maldives.

As per the Presidential Decree, the state of emergency was enforced in order to protect the peace and welfare of all citizens and the country, following the events that unfolded in relation to the Supreme Court Order No. 2018/SC-SJ/01, issued on 1 February 2018; which has resulted in; the disruption of the functions of the executive power and the State institutions vested with specific mandates under the Constitution, the infringement of national security and public interest, and if implemented, which would potentially lead to an undermining of the supremacy of the Constitution of the Republic of Maldives.

Despite the declaration of the state of emergency, there will be no enforcement of a curfew; and general movements, services and businesses will not be affected.

The Government notes the concerns of the international community

February 20, 2018

The Government of the Maldives takes note with appreciation the concerns being expressed by friends and partners in the international community regarding the declaration of the State of Emergency in the Maldives for a period of fifteen days on 5 February 2018 and subsequently extended by the Parliament for a further period of thirty days on 20 February 2018. The Government further notes that the Parliament has provided relief by lifting some of the restrictions imposed on Constitutional Articles under the State of Emergency and by imposing the State of Emergency only upon individuals alleged to have carried out illegal activities and in the places they stayed.

The Government’s request for extension was based on the advise of the National Security Council and today’s decision by the Parliament to extend the State of Emergency for a further period of thirty days was warranted due to the threats posed to national security following the Supreme Court Order No. 2018/SC-SJ/01, issued on 1 February 2018, and the ensuing events and the information received by State authorities that includes the current investigation into the money trail allegedly used to bribe Justices, which needs more time to reach a conclusion. The subsequent evidence received in the investigation illustrates the verdict has resulted in; the disruption of the functions of the executive power and the State institutions vested with specific mandates under the Constitution, the infringement of national security and public interest, and would have lead to an undermining of the supremacy of the Constitution of the Republic of Maldives.

The Government is conscious of the gravity and consequences of the decision to declare the State of Emergency and assures the international community that the decision was taken as a last resort, after serious and exhaustive consideration, to ensure national security and constitutional order, to uphold the rule of law and to safeguard the peace and stability of the nation.  The State of Emergency will be lifted as soon as the threats posed to national security are addressed satisfactorily.

The Government wishes to note that the Supreme Court Order of 1 February 2018 was nullified, in part, by the Supreme Court by its Court Order no 2018/SC-SJ/03, issued on 6 February 2018. Other parts of it were suspended by its Court Order No 2018/SC-VA-J/01 issued on 18 February 2018, hence, now there is no legal mandate to implement the Supreme Court Order of 1 February 2018.

During this difficult time in the history of the nation, the Government also wishes to extend an invitation to all its partners to clarify facts and policies prior to reaching assessments pertaining to these very serious security issues, complicated constitutional problems and sensitive internal differences. It is important for friends and partners in the international community to stand with the Government and the people of the Maldives, and to refrain from any actions that could escalate an already delicate situation and derail the efforts being made to bring back normalcy in the Maldives. The Government of Maldives also notes that it is ready for dialogue with the opposition, as this is essential to help restore normalcy in the Maldives.

 

The Government reiterates its firm commitment to work closely with the international community to address the concerns that they might have. The Government would also like to use this opportunity to reiterate its unwavering commitment to ensuring the safety and security of foreign nationals residing in the country, as well as those visiting the Maldives on vacation.

Official Statement on Parliament confirmation of The President’s Proposed Extension, with amendments, to the State of Emergency

Parliament confirms and extends the State of Emergency with amendments and decides to provide relief to some of the rights restricted under it.

The Parliament today, 20 February 2018, voted to give approval to the Presidential Decree of 5 February 2018 and its consequent amendments, extend the State of Emergency and provide relief to some of the rights restricted under it on the basis that the State of Emergency will be imposed on individuals alleged to have carried out illegal activities and the places they stayed as per the Decree. The Presidential Decree and its amendments declaring the State of Emergency have been extended by an additional 30 days by the Parliament.

Furthermore, in amending the Decree the Parliament also decided that the rights restricted under the following Articles of the Constitution due to the State of Emergency will be lifted effective from the date of extension of the State of Emergency:

1. Article 100 (Removal of the President or Vice President)
2. Article 101 (Vote of no confidence for a Member of the Cabinet)
3. Article 113 (Jurisdiction of the Supreme Court on the Impeachment of the President)
4. Article 228 (Removal of the Prosecutor General from office)

Section 38 of the Regulation of Parliament states matters on which compliance by citizens which requires more than half of the total membership of the People’s Majilis are present at the sitting at which the matter is voted upon as per 87 (b) of the Constitution. Nonetheless the declaration of the State of Emergency is not included as a matter which requires compliance by citizens as per Section 38 of the Regulation of the Parliament. Hence, the sitting was preceded taking into view that the quorum needed to pass the Presidential Decree declaring the State of Emergency and the consequent amendments were that which is stipulated in Article 86 of the Constitution.

The Parliament at session also decided to seek legal advice of the Supreme Court under Article 95 of the Constitution in relation to the questions raised by some of the members of Parliament with regard to the Parliament’s quorum.

Update on the Current Situation in the Maldives (20/02/2018): President’s Proposed Amendment to State of Emergency Decree Amended and Approved by Majlis

The President’s proposed amendment to the Decree (No. 2018/3) declaring the State of Emergency was approved by the People’s Majlis today.

The National Security Committee of the Majlis had recommended yesterday that Majlis endorse the amendments proposed by the President while proposing additional amendments.

Majlis approved the amendments in three motions. The motions voted on were as follows:

1. To remove all restrictions placed by the State of Emergency Decree on;

  • Article 100 – Removal of President or Vice President
  • Article 101 – Vote of no confidence in a member of the Cabinet
  • Article 113 – Jurisdiction of the Supreme Court
  • Article 228 – Removal from Office of the Prosecutor General

2. To extend the State of Emergency by an additional 30 days in so far as it shall only apply to those alleged to have carried out illegal activities – it shall not apply to otherwise law abiding residents of, or visitors to, the Maldives.

3. To seek Legal Clarification from the Supreme Court, pursuant to Article 95 of the Constitution, on the applicability of Section 38 of Parliamentary Rules of Procedure.

Section 38 of Parliamentary Rules of Procedure, pursuant to Article 87(b) of the Constitution, relates to voting by members of the Majlis in matters requiring compliance by citizens.

President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom, on 5 February 2018, declared a State of Emergency by Presidential Decree No. 2018/3, under Article 253 of the Constitution of the Republic of Maldives.

As per the Presidential Decree, the State of Emergency was enforced in order to protect the peace and wellbeing of all citizens, and the country, and to facilitate investigations following the events that unfolded in relation to the Supreme Court Order No. SC-SJ/01/2018, issued on 1 February 2018, which resulted in the disruption of the functions of the executive power and the State institutions vested with specific mandates under the Constitution, the infringement of national security and public interest, and if implemented, would potentially lead to an undermining of the supremacy of the Constitution of the Republic of Maldives.

Despite the declaration of the state of emergency, there will be no enforcement of a curfew; and general movements, services and businesses will not be affected.