FM Shahid served notice regarding no-confidence motion

Maldivian Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid. (Sun Photo/Mohamed Hayyan)

Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid has been served 14 days’ notice to respond to the no-confidence motion submitted against him at the parliament.

The no-confidence motion was filed by an opposition alliance which comprises of the opposition PPM-PNC coalition, ‘Fikuregge Dhurin’, headed by MDP’s leader, Parliament Speaker Nasheed, Jumhoory Party and Maldives National Party citing lack of regard for national interest with respect to the maritime border dispute between Maldives and Mauritius.

The motion also stated that the government, in reality, had defended the interest of another party despite claiming to have defended the country’s national interest, as the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) had been clearly established under Maldivian laws.

Deputy Speaker Eva Abdulla while opening Monday’s parliamentary sitting said the no-confidence motion against Foreign Minister Shahid had been submitted on May 18th with the signatures of 13 lawmakers. She also noted that the minister had been served 14 days’ notice to respond to the motion.

A no-confidence motion against Attorney General Ibrahim Riffath has already been submitted to the parliament. The opposition alliance is also preparing for the submission of a no-confidence motion against President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih.

A no-confidence motion against a cabinet minister has to be submitted with the signatures of at least 10 lawmakers. Such a motion can only be approved with the votes of at least 43 lawmakers. 

With the resignation of 13 lawmakers loyal to MDP’s leader, Parliament Speaker Mohamed Nasheed from the party for the formation of a new political party, ‘The Democrats’ – MDP has lost the parliament’s supermajority.

Nevertheless, there are still 56 pro-government lawmakers.

Twenty-five lawmakers represent parties in the opposition alliance; 12 from Fikuregge Dhirun, seven from PPM-PNC coalition, three from Jumhoory Party, and three from MNP.

Therewith, it is highly unlikely the no-confidence motions will succeed despite the changes.