Judicial Service Commission (JSC) has made the decision to request the Parliament to dismiss Criminal Court judge Ibrahim Ali.
In a statement on Wednesday evening, JSC said that the commission, in addition to deciding to request the Parliament for his dismissal, has also decided to place him under a probationary 60-day suspension, and to request the Parliament for his dismissal.
Judge Ibrahim Ali was investigated for allegedly issuing unconstitutional court warrants.
The case involves 10 defendants charged with assault using a sharp-edged weapon. The judge originally issued warrants for their arrest pending the outcome of their trial, but later, after the preliminary hearings ended, ordered the release of all 10 defendants at their request. The decision was appealed by the Prosecutor General’s Office at the High Court, which ruled that the decision was based on wrongful procedures, and to review the decision to release the defendants if the Prosecutor General’s Office makes such a request.
Judge Ibrahim Ali is accused of deliberately stalling the implementation of the High Court ruling.
JSC said on Wednesday that the commission’s investigation uncovered that Judge Ibrahim Ali failed to comply with decisions made by the High Court on multiple dates regarding nine of the 10 defendants charged with assault using a sharp-edged weapon, and failed to comply with the High Court ruling and schedule a hearing to review their detainment in response to letters by the Prosecutor General’s Office to the Criminal Court for a review of their detainment on October 23, 2018, October 30, 2018, and November 12, 2018.
JSC said that the High Court, in ruling on Aril 17, 2019, quashing the Criminal Court order to release the last of the 10 defendants – Moosa Ibrahim, M. Bluenia – established that if the Prosecutor General’s Office submits a motion to the Criminal Court requesting for the defendant to be detained pending trial within five days, then the Criminal Court must make a new decision on the detainment of the defendant within five days the motion is submitted.
JSC found that though the Prosecutor General’s Office submitted the motion within the given timeframe, Judge Ibrahim Ali had deliberately delayed a decision, the same as he had delayed a decision regarding the previous defendants.
Judge Ibrahim Ali has been accused of ignoring repeated letters by Prosecutor General’s Office over lack of compliance with the High Court ruling, and of deliberately delaying decisions on the detainment of the defendants involved in the case.
JSC said that Judge Ibrahim Ali last held a hearing in the case on June 10, 2019, in response to a letter by the High Court, during which he was found to be contemptuous of the High Court ruling and encouraging towards the defendants.
JSC said that the commission found him to have violated the Constitution, Judicature Act, and Code of Conduct of Judges, and has therefore made the decision to place him under a probationary 60-day suspension, and to request the Parliament for his dismissal.
The decision comes with Judge Ibrahim Ali under investigation by JSC for three additional misconduct allegations.