[JURIST] The Maldives Parliament [official website] on Tuesday voted 78-2 in favor of impeaching Vice President Mohamed Jameel accusing him of neglecting his duties. Jameel had been deputy to President Yameen Abdul Gayoom [official website] since their election victory in 2013. At the center of this impeachment [Sun Online report] is thought to be an exchange for concessions for jailed opposition leader and ex-President Mohamed Nasheed [official website]. Nasheed was inprisoned earlier this year for ordering the arrest of a top judge when he was President a few years ago. There is belief that the impeachment may bring Gayoom loyalist, Tourism Minister Ahmed Adeeb [official website] to be appointed to President.
The Maldives government has created significant controversy over the last three years, following Nasheed’s resignation in 2012. In March 2015 the legislative body of Maldives, the People’s Majlis, amended [JURIST report] the Prison and Parole Act to remove an inmate’s right to membership in a political party. In March 2013 Maldives police authorities arrested Nasheed [JURIST report] for missing a court appearance over charges that he illegally detained a judge prior to his resignation. Last month Nasheed was arrested again, this time for alleged violations [JURIST report] of the country’s anti-terrorism law. In early March 2015 the Criminal Court of Maldives sentenced Nasheed to 13 years in prison [JURIST report] for terrorism-related charges. Nasheed’s trial garnered international attention from civil rights advocates. Immediately following the trial UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein condemned the trial proceedings for violations of due process [JURIST report].