The ruling Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM)’s disciplinary committee has decided to withdraw three parliamentarians’ memberships from the party.
The three MPs are Thinadhoo-North MP Saudhullah Hilmy, Thimarafushi MP Mohamed Musthafa and Fuvahmulah-North MP Ali Shah.
According to the ruling party’s disciplinary committee, the decision was made unanimously on Saturday, after the members of the committee agreed that the three MPs had breached the party’s regulations, defied the decisions of its parliamentary group and defamed the government publicly.
The three lawmakers were amongst the 10 PPM members who wanted to be removed the party after it split into two factions. They were also amongst the 45 MPs who voted in favour of deposing the parliament’s speaker Abdullah Maseeh in the opposition-lobbied censure motion in March.
PPM’s disciplinary committee had even noted how the three MPs had failed to withdraw their support for the censure motion against the parliament’s speaker during the period they were given, as one of its reasons for withdrawing their memberships from the party.
Meanwhile, the Supreme Court in July issued a ruling stating that any member that resigns or is expelled from the political party they were registered to at the time of the election, or shifts to another party, will lose their seat in the parliament. The apex court later clarified its ruling and held that it cannot be applied retroactively.
According to the three MPs, PPM had notified them of its decision to expel them after they voted in favour of the parliament speaker’s censure motion; however just days before the Supreme Court’s ruling, the party had told the them that its disciplinary committee is “still investigating” their case and that they have not been officially expelled yet.
Following the contentious ruling by the Supreme Court on anti-defection, the Elections Commission had declared six lawmakers formerly of ruling Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) disqualified from the parliament. The unseated parliamentarians are Thulusdhoo MP Mohamed Waheed Ibrahim, Villingili MP Saud Hussain, Maduvvari MP Mohamed Ameeth and Dhidhdhoo MP Abdul Latheef Mohamed, Machangolhi South MP Abdulla Sinan and Dhangethi MP Ilham Ahmed.
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