- Auditor General refers to prosecute Jihad regarding MVR 300 million loan issue
- Govt Oversight Committee to decide on cabinet approval issue on 23 Dec
- President Yameen Ratifies Anti-Human Trafficking Bill
- Minister at the President’s Office Scheduled to Attend OIC Council of Foreign Ministers Session
- Baros Maldives celebrates its 40th anniversary
- It is a worry if authorities don’t take action against law breakers- Shameem
- Gasim proved his love for the nation in the Presidential election- Ameen
- Many challenges even after catching illegal expats- Immigration
- All basic items will be sold cheap if all due payments are settled- Adam Azim
- National Flag to be flown at half-mast following death of former President of South Africa
- Vice President praises Nelson Mandela as a model of leadership for equality and rights
- Several issues regarding the school system would be resolved in time for new academic year – Vice President
- “Nelson Mandela was a source of Unrivalled Inspiration for Recent Generations” – President Yameen
Nasheed’s trial can be fair- Don McKinnon
The Commonwealth Secretary-General’s Special Envoy to Maldives, Sir Donald McKinnon has said that the trial against former President Mohamed Nasheed on the charges of abusing his powers while in office “certainly can be fair and it should be fair.”
Commonwealth Secretary-General’s Special Envoy on Maldives Sir Don Mckinnon said this in an interview to Radio Australia.
“It certainly can be fair and it should be fair. These people know exactly what is expected of a judiciary, but there is a high level of political sensitivity in that country, there’s a tense atmosphere which does get more difficult from time to time. But there is still the possibility of having a fair trial, yes,” he said when asked whether Nasheed’s trial can be fair.
“We have said that the judiciary is not the strongest of the democratic institutions in the Maldives. It is getting better, but I think on this particular case they know very well that there’s more than just a few Maldivian people watching this trial. The international players are watching and I believe that the Maldivian judiciary will be very careful,” he added.
Sir McKinnon said that Nasheed’s trial is not unpredicted as during President Nasheed’s rule he arrested the judge and have him put in detention, then had the army controlling him. He said that this was one of those events that clearly led up to what became a change of power.
When asked whether if the Commonwealth is worried that the Maldives could go down the path of Fiji, the Commonwealth Secretary-General’s Special Envoy said: “Well I’ve got to back up a little bit on that one because ever since I was involved I was very much insistent on having a very close forensic look at the issue of the transfer of power, and yes there were three Maldivian gentlemen who were part of this inquiry, but I insisted this had to be very much an international orientated inquiry, and the result was we had a judge from Canada, a judge from New Zealand and a retired judge from Singapore, all sat on this commission of inquiry, and concluded at the end of the day that the transfer of power was legitimate, that President Nasheed had in fact resigned.”
He added that the situation of Maldives is very different from that in Fiji. He said that in Fiji one person has taken power effectively at the point of a gun, and still retains that power somewhat four years later.
McKinnon said that the problem is that who live in Western countries expect things to happen very fast. He said that he began his dealings with the Maldives “probably about seven years ago, encouraging them to have a new constitution, have free and fair elections, which they did.”
“ And that was the first time they’d really had free and fair elections in 2008. Now on that basis Maldives democracy is really only four years old, so there’s still a lot of elbowing people around, much of the political structure within the Maldives is based on personalities, there’s not great ideological divides, there are six or seven different parties in and out of the margins right now,” he said.
Furthermore, Sir McKinnon said that there are many things that it is grappling with that it’s never had to grapple with before, and the important thing is the international community give them support to allow this very fledgling democracy to mature.