Legal Politics

No-confidence motion filed to dismiss prosecutor general

A ruling coalition lawmaker submitted Monday a motion of no-confidence to remove Prosecutor General Aishath Bisham from office.

Thinadhoo North MP Ahmed Abdulla accused the chief prosecutor of failing to perform her duties without undue influence. Bisham was culpable in the “unlawful” arrest and prosecution of several lawmakers, reads the motion.

The lawmakers were detained and put on trial for “political motives” in breach of the criminal procedures law, Abdulla contended, noting her failure to exercise powers as an independent state official.

In the wake of former president Abdulla Yameen’s heavy defeat in September’s election, the courts released several jailed politicians and cleared the way for the return of exiled opposition leaders.

Due process violations were cited in most cases, including the sentencing in absentia of Jumhooree Party leader Gasim Ibrahim and an identity fraud charge wrongfully raised against MP Faris Maumoon.

MPs Abdulla Sinan, Ilham Ahmed and Abdulla Riyaz were released hours after provisional results were announced.

Last month, the PG office withdrew charges against 12 opposition lawmakers alleged to have scaled security barricades to enter the parliament house.

Bisham would be dismissed if the no-confidence motion is passed by a simple majority of lawmakers.

Despite the resignation of six lawmakers – including the new president, vice president and four new ministers – the ruling coalition retains a majority in the 85-member People’s Majlis.

Bisham was former president Yameen’s legal affairs secretary prior to her appointment to the post. Her predecessor was found guilty of conspiring to kidnap the president.

She also briefly served as attorney general in former president Dr Mohamed Waheed’s administration, but failed to secure parliamentary approval and was later appointed a special advisor to the president.

Bisham oversaw the prosecution of several high-profile figures jailed under Yameen’s administration, which included two former presidents, two Supreme Court justices, two vice presidents, two defence ministers, leaders of opposition parties, several lawmakers, and the country’s chief prosecutor.

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Source URL:  Maldives Independent

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