PG advises to present Zameel’s case to Police

Deputy Minister of Defence Ministry, Hassan Zameel | Photo: Defence Ministry

Malé, Maldives —Prosecutor General’s Office (PGO) has advised to present the case against Deputy Minister of the Defence Ministry, Hassan Zameel from the Parliament’s Committee on Member’s Privileges and Ethics first to the Police for investigation.

When the parliament called to summoned individual officers of Maldives National Defence Force (MNDF) to the National Security Services Committee to inquire about the security breach in the attack against Speaker Mohamed Nasheed on May 6, a letter with the signature of Zameel was sent denying the request of the parliament and stating that MNDF would answer on behalf of the individual officers. 

An issue against Deputy Minister of Defence, Hassan Zameel was then presented to the PGO from the parliament’s committee.

A media official from PGO informed local media outlet “AdduLive” that Zameel’s case has been sent back to the parliament and been requested to present to the Police as the Criminal Procedure Code states that the case should be first investigated by the Police.

PGO noted that the Privilege Act also states that a case must be first sent to the Police for investigation after which the Police will request the PGO for prosecution.

Zameel’s case was sent to the PGO without the approval of the Committee on Member’s Privileges and Ethics. The committee decided during last night’s meeting that the case against Zameel will not be forwaded as the Minister of Defence, Mariya Ahmed Didi should be held responsible for the letter sent to parliament instead.

MP for Dhangathi Constituency, Mohamed Nazim who had previously served as the Defense Minister of Maldives backed up the statement released by MNDF and agreed that individual MNDF officers cannoted be summoned under the guidelines of MNDF but the superiors of that force can be summoned in behalf of them.

Defending the ministry’s decision, Minister Mariya had explained the reason why it is not allowed for individual MNDF officers to be summoned for inquiries. 

Minister Mariya stated that under sector 24 of the MNDF guidelines, any information the officers recieved while in service is forbidden to be shared with anyone else other than those mentioned. They are the superiors of MNDF, the court, the most superior members of the Police department. 

Chief of Defence Force Major General Abdullah Shamaal was summoned to the Parliamentary Committee on National Security yesterday to question over the security breach of Former President and Current Speaker of the Parliament Mohamed Nasheed during May 6 terror attack. The committee has also decided to summon Defence Minister Maria Didi to the committee although a certain date has not yet been announced.

Following the terror attack against the Former President on May 6, criticism has been aimed mainly at MNDF with allegations that they have failed to provide necessary security for the Speaker. 

The police is currently investigating the cause behind the attack on the Former President. 4 individuals have been arrested so far, all of them indicating radicalisation. The Parliamentary Committee is investigating into the security breach of the Speaker following the terror attack.