Nasheed says presence of two institutions with weapons unwise

Parliament Speaker, former President Mohamed Nasheed wears a mask to protect from the spread of the new coronavirus as he presides over a parliamentary sitting. (Photo/People's Majlis)

Speaker of the Parliament Mohamed Nasheed has said that it would not be wise for the existence of two institutions of similar powers with armaments. 

The Speaker made the remarks as while debating on the Maldives Police Service Bill yesterday. He also said that the bill has all the procedures and information for modernizing the institution.

Nasheed said that the chapter in the bill regarding the safety of officers provided unprecedented protections to officers. The bill also clearly stated the procedures for recruitment and promotion in a fair manner.

He also highlighted on how the police force was formed in the Maldives. 

Nasheed said that the institution of Police and army first came into existence on 1892 or 1893 during the rule of King Nooraddheen.

“When the king traveled to Bodu Hithi, there were uniformed people who marched in unison, who were closer to the king than even the elders. The residents of Male’ then called these people, this party, Dheedheefathi.” said Nasheed.

“I believe that the mindsets of the honorable MPs should now be that it is not wise to keep two powerful institutions with weapons in the country,” said Nasheed.

Nasheed’s remarks come as MPs have called out to limit the powers of the police. Nasheed said that his statements were not directed at the current police force, but was a hope for the institution to come in the future. 

“There exists a police institution. There are things that they have conducted. There are many things that they currently conducting as well. The merits and demerits of these things are being spoken about by many honorable MPs. But what I am saying is, this bill is for our future generations.” said Nasheed.

Nasheed said that some of his rivals had pointed out that he was taking in the debates of the parliament. He noted that there was a difference in taking part in the debate and speaking during the debate. He said that what he was doing, was merely providing direction to the bill.

He said that some of the remarks made by MPs had indicated that they wished for a different police institution, under a different name and uniform. 

“That the institution should be, the headquarters should be somewhere else. That what happened in the past is gone, that a new chapter is beginning,” said Nasheed.

Some members of the police have also been expressing displeasure at the rhetoric of some MPs regarding the institution.