Cannot obey SC ruling amid “attempts to impeach” President: Maldives A-G

Mohamed Anil said that he had received information that there could be developments leading to “a national security crisis”

Updated - November 28, 2021 08:05 am IST

Published - February 04, 2018 12:20 pm IST - COLOMBO

Maldives Attorney-General Mohamed Anil. File photo

Maldives Attorney-General Mohamed Anil. File photo

The Maldives’s Attorney-General Mohamed Anil said on Sunday morning that he had instructed law enforcement agencies not to obey a recent Supreme Court order , citing what he termed an attempt by the apex court “to impeach President Abdulla Yameen”.

Amid mounting concern over the Male government’s delay in implementing the significant ruling - overturning convictions of exiled former President Mohamed Nasheed and eight others – Mr. Anil told reporters in the capital that he had received information that there could be developments leading to “a national security crisis”.

Claiming that the Supreme Court has no authority over the dismissal of the President, Mr. Anil said that law enforcement agencies should not obey a ruling “in contravention of the constitution”. The Hindu ’s attempts to reach Mr. Anil over telephone have been unsuccessful so far. Government officials however said a statement in this regard would soon be released.

 

According to local media reports, the chiefs of the military and police said they would take orders from the Attorney-General. Meanwhile, local journalists said some of them were pepper-sprayed while covering protests in different parts of Male, that have erupted following the ruling. Opposition supporters are demanding that the government comply with the SC ruling.

Breaking his silence on Saturday, President Yameen said he did not expect such an order from the Supreme Court. He appealed to Maldivians to put forward “patience and national interest”, adding that he was prepared to hold early elections. Responding to him, Mr. Nasheed said on Twitter: “Pledging to hold an early election in a fixed term presidential system as in the Maldives is ludicrous. President Yameen must relent and leave now.”

In addition to ordering the release of nine opposition leaders the Supreme Court on Thursday also ordered that the 12 legislators, who had been stripped of their seats, be restored to the body. Following the development, domestic and international actors, including the UN and countries such as India and the US, have urged Mr. Yameen to respect the ruling.

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