MP Yaugoob’s seat dispute hearing scheduled for today

MP Yaugoob Abdullah of Dhaandhoo constituency | Photo: Majlis

Male’, Maldives – The Supreme Court of Maldives has rescheduled the hearing regarding the matter to settle the dispute of MP Yaugoob Abdullah’s parliamentary seat, for today.

The case was filed against MP Yaugoob, of Dhaandhoo constituency to declare that his seat has been lost, by former judge of the Criminal Court of Maldives, Mohamed Haleem. Since the filing, the Supreme Court accepted the matter to be heard at the court and an initial hearing scheduled for Thursday morning at 09:00, however, it was later postponed for today. The new timing of the hearing has been announced to be 11:00.

Questions over the legitimacy of Yaugoob’s parliamentary seat arose after his appointment to the council of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of the Maldives (ICAM), created under the recently enacted Chartered Accountants Act. With legal experts questioning his appointment, Yagoob resigned the next day.

However Haleem announced that he will be filing the petition with the Supreme Court, saying that “Parliamentarians cannot retain their position as parliamentarians after they lose their seat, like marriage reconcilliations after divorce.”

As per Article 73 (d) of the constitution, parliamentarians are prohibited from serving as members of an independent commission or in any independent position.

However, Yauqoob is reported to have told “Sun” that he does not believe his appointment to ICAM, which is an independent and autonomous legal body mandated with the regulation of the accounting profession in the Maldives, poses any legal issues, but found recusing himself to be the best course of action under the circumstances.

“I don’t find any reason why I wouldn’t be allowed to serve in that position. I received counsel which went both ways from a lot of lawyers. But given the difference of opinion, I decided that it would be unwise to continue,” said Yaugoob.