The Progressive Congress Coalition has alleged the current administration of interfering in former President Abdulla Yameen’s appeal hearing. In a statement released last night, the opposition coalition stated that the state has started to interfere in former President Abdulla Yameen’s appeal process. On 8th October 2020, the Supreme Court of Maldives passed a verdict in favor of former President Yameen, deeming the freezing of his accounts as unlawful. The opposition coalition has maintained that verdict is proof that the charges on President Yameen are politically motivated.
The opposition alliance also alleged the judicial watchdog JSC of influencing the appeal process of the opposition leader. Citing Article 157 of the constitution which states that the JSC should remain independent and free of bias, the opposition coalition called out on the JSC’s alleged attempts to influences the judges of the High Court of Maldives. The statement pointed out that though the JSC is to remain independent, it is currently headed by the President of the ruling party along with his long-time attorneys and party members.
The allegations against the JSC is backed by several statements by former Judges who handled high profile cases and were forced to retire within the last two years. Particularly the former Chief Justice of Criminal Court of Maldives, who initially handled former President Yameen’s case but was removed and replaced just 4 hour prior to passing a verdict. The former Chief Justice Ahmed Hailam released a statement alleging the JSC and top executives of the government of threatening him to confirm a guilty verdict. The case is yet to be investigated by any government authority.