Malé, Maldives – Maldives National Defence Force (MNDF) has stated that the institution would be answering to the National Security Services Committee’s (241 Committee) investigation of the terror attack on former President and Speaker of Parliament Mohamed Nasheed instead of individual officers.
In a statement MNDF said that while the Maldivian Parliament and its Committees can summon any individual or organizations to testify or demand any required documents, that the military does not fall under this categories and that no individual officer could be summoned and questioned.
MNDF stated that all defense operations are required to be overseen by a member of the cabinet of ministers and that the minister in charge of a specific operation must answer to the President or Parliament, questioning individual personnel regarding their operations contradicts the MNDF military hierarchy, chain of command, command and control and policies followed within the organisation for generations.
The 241 committee is currently investigating the breach in security which resulted in an assassination attempt on Nasheed on the 7th of May, in which he suffered multiple serious injuries.
The statement went on to claim that ” Due to this, the national defence force and its various subordinate echelon have lost their command and control, and has resulted in major setbacks in carrying out their duties, and could result in irreparable damage to national security”.
MNDF also noted that this was decided by advice from the MNDF Advisory Board.
MNDF noted that issuing any information obtained in the line of duty to anyone other than those specified in the MNDF is outlawed. In addition to this, MNDF laws prevent an individual officer from conversing with various parties about such information without approval from a commander .
“Subsequently, to maintain command and control as well as chain of command policies, instead of individual officers answering regarding their duties, this organisation will respond” said the statement.
The statement ended with an affirmation that MNDF will provide any information requested by the Maldivian Parliament and its Committees regarding any ongoing investigation.