High Court ruling contradicts Supreme Court

October 1, 2019; Supreme Court of the Maldives. (Sun Photo/Fayaz Moosa)

A High Court ruling has contradicted a decision by the Supreme Court regarding the creation of the Judicial Academy.

The ruling stated that the Supreme Court did not have the power to create or abolish institutions when it dissolved the Judicial Training Center (JTC) and created the Judicial Academy.

The High Court ruling is regarding the case of two employees of the JTC who lost their jobs when the Center was dissolved. The men who took the case to the employment tribunal appealed once again in High Court after the case was decided by the Tribunal.

Supreme Court ruled that the JTC was abolished by the powers granted under the Article (141), (156) of the Constitution. However, the High Court ruled that the articles cited by the Supreme Court did not grant it the power directly or indirectly to create or abolish institutions.

The High Court ruling also stated that the characteristics of a unitary state cited in Article (2) of the Constitution would be lost if the three branches of the government started acting as separate governments by creating and abolishing its institutions.

The High Court bench that ruled in the case included Senior Judge Shujau Usman, Judge Mohamed Niyaz and Judge Shuaib Hussain Zakariyya and unanimously to order that the two men be reinstated or be provided related new employment within working seven days. The ruling also ordered compensation in salaries and benefits to be paid for the period to the men.