Deputy Speaker Eva Abdulla. Photo/Parliament

Eva accuses govt of orchestrating parliament deadlock ahead of pres election

This the first time in the country's history that no-confidence motions against the speaker and deputy speaker have been filed simultaneously.

9 June 2023

By Shahudha Mohamed

Deputy speaker Eva Abdulla on Thursday alleged that the no-confidence motions against Speaker Mohamed Nasheed and herself was moved in the parliament with an intention to for a parliamentary deadlock.

Eva was speaking at a session on parliamentary oversight and legislative scrutiny organised by the Westminster Foundation for Democracy (WFD) of the UK.

"There is no space for the parliament to move forward with the motion of both the deputy speaker and the speaker," Eva said, pointing out that it was the rule of the parliament and that there was nothing anyone could do about it.

Eva believes that pro-government lawmakers moved a no-confidence motion against Nasheed in the parliament in an attempt to impose a deadlock on parliament.

"With just three months to go for the presidential election, they took the decision after much thought, well aware of what they’re doing, and quite deliberately force parliament into a deadlock," Eva said.

The government stalled the proceedings of parliament, Eva alleged, at this moment in time to:

  • Abuse state resources and funds in the run-up to the elections

  • Ensure that the government is not held accountable through parliament

Eva said the government's parliamentary group consisted of experienced people who knew the rules well, so it cannot be assumed that the issue of speaker and deputy speaker was brought to parliament simultaneously without knowing consequences.

Eva pointed out that after the no-confidence motion against Nasheed was filed, government MPs have repeatedly said that Nasheed will no longer be able to sit in the parliament again.

"If the speaker doesn't preside, then how will this [case] proceed? The rules don't give that space anymore," Eva said.

However, Addu Meedhoo MP Rozaina Adam refuted Eva's remarks on Twitter, saying that she should not “make such misleading lies."

"Eva's no-confidence was scheduled for tomorrow. Committees were stopped [by Nasheed]. That too illegally to not allow for the vote. You want to sit on the chair even if you don't have the confidence of the members. There is no need to put this on the government. Stand down," said Rozaina, a pro-government MDP MP.

Ihavandhoo MP Mohamed Shifau also denied Eva's claims on Twitter. He said that no clause of the parliament's rules of procedure prevents the speaker and the deputy speaker from sitting in the parliament when there is a no-confidence motion against him.

"But once the notice expires, we cannot conduct any other work in parliament without settling the confidence matter first," Shafiu said.

Pro-government lawmakers believe Nasheed was the one who brought the proceedings to a grinding halt and put the parliament on deadlock.

The rules of the parliament do not specify the clear procedure to be followed when a no-confidence motion is moved against both the speaker and the deputy speaker at the same time. 

This the first time in the country's history that no-confidence motions against the speaker and deputy speaker have been filed simultaneously.