Shaheem defends right to express his opinion, accuses Parliament of intimidation

Dr. Mohamed Shaheem Ali Saeed. (File Photo/Sun/Mohamed Afrah)

Advisor to the Secretary-General of Islamic Organization of Cooperation (IOC) and former Maldivian Islamic Minister, Dr. Mohamed Shaheem Ali Saeed has accused the Maldivian Parliament of engaging in acts of intimidation in order to restrict freedom of speech.

He made the accusation after ruling MDP’s parliamentary group leader, Central Henveyru MP Ali Azim filed a motion asking for a parliamentary inquiry to determine the capacity by which Dr. Shaheem had been criticizing the domestic affairs of Maldives.

The motion, which Ali Azim filed via letter on August 19, was read by Speaker of Parliament, former Maldivian President Mohamed Nasheed at the parliamentary sitting this Monday morning.

“The honorable parliamentary representative has sent a letter to the Parliament asking to look into whether the criticism of domestic affairs of Maldives is being carried out at the instructions of the Secretary-General of IOC,” said Nasheed, reading out the letter.

According to Nasheed, the letter has been forwarded to the National Security and Foreign Relations Committee of Parliament.

In response to the motion, Dr. Shaheem accused the Parliament of engaging in intimidation.

He said that he had the right to express his personal opinions regarding matters regardless of his official position.

“What’s the purpose of this? Everyone has the right to express their personal opinion no matter what official position they hold. Every Maldivian citizen has a duty to condemn NDN’s report. The Parliament should refrain from intimidating people,” wrote Dr. Shaheem over Twitter.