Speaker Nasheed apologizes for tourist’s arrest

February 3, 2020: Speaker of the Parliament Mohamed Nasheed. (Sun Photo/Fayaz Moosa)

Speaker of the Parliament Mohamed Nasheed has apologized for the arrest of a tourist on the local island of Maafushi on February 6, 2020.

The tourist has been identified as Cecilia Jastrzembska (26 years), a British national.

Speaking in English in today’s parliamentary session. Mohamed Nasheed issued an apology to Cecilia and noted that the Commissioner had also apologized for the incident. The speaker stated that details of the incident would be available from the Home Ministry.

“I hope, that the Tourism Minister would invite Cecilia back to the Maldives and Maafushi for a holiday,” said Nasheed.

Witnesses had stated that Cecilia had repeatedly disobeyed the instructions of the officers before being arrested. Cecilia was in a residential area of the island where tourists are not allowed to visit in bikini. Video footage also shows Cecilia arguing with officers who advised her to cover herself up.

The council of Maafushi had also stated that she was in a state of intoxication at the time of her arrest and added that alcohol was not allowed on the island. The council stated that she had visited a resort for a day before returning to the island intoxicated.


English media had reported that Cecilia was TV personality and had appeared on TV shows such as First Dates and Ninja Warrior UK and worked as a parliamentary advisor for the UK House of Commons. A bio of a twitter account in her name reads that she is a Political Philosophy Masters student at the University of Warwick.

Home Minister Imran Abdulla had previously said that Police officers were not grossly wrong in the arrest of the bikini-clad tourist, but admitted that the situation could have been handled better. Police have stated that the arrest of the tourist by male officers was because there were no female officers on the island at the time.