Maamendhoo chief magistrate resigns in face of impending dismissal

Ahmed Shukoor, Chief Magistrate of G. A. Maamendhoo Magistrate Court.

G. A. Maamendhoo chief magistrate Ahmed Shukoor, who campaigned for former President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom in the 2018 presidential elections, resigned on Tuesday, in face of an impending parliamentary vote to dismiss him.

Judicial Service Commission (JSC) has announced Shukoor tendered his resignation earlier this Tuesday.

JSC, following an investigation into multiple allegations of misconduct against Shukoor, made a formal request with the Parliament for his dismissal on Sunday.

The Parliament’s Judiciary Committee, which reviewed the request, voted in favor of Shukoor’s dismissal on Monday.

JSC found Shukoor guilty of four cases of misconduct.

One of the allegations that JSC found him guilty of is that he met with attorney of a suspect who Shukoor has a personal connection to at a restaurant in G. A. Vilingili on the day the Vilingili Magistrate Court was scheduled to make a decision regarding his remand and accepted an envelope handed over to him by the attorney. He had been working as a magistrate at the Vilingili Magistrate Court at the time.

 The second allegation he was found guilty of is that he attended a meeting held at a private residence in G. A. Vilingili with several former judges during the 2018 presidential elections and expressed his support for then-President Yameen and campaigned to gather votes for him.

The third allegation he has been found guilty of is that he made political statements while in a café in G. A. Vilingili in September 2018 and asked for votes for Yameen.

The fourth allegation he has been found guilty of is that he shared his decision regarding the remand of terror suspects arrested from G. A. Kolamaafushi with the police prior to their remand hearing at the G. A. Vilingili Magistrate Court, and acted in contravention of judicial standards during the hearing.

Shukoor’s resignation comes with him under investigation by JSC for eight additional allegations of misconduct.

  • Allegation that information pertaining to requests for search and seizure warrants filed by the police with the court are leaked, resulting in evidence tampering.
  • Allegation that he cultivates close personal relationships with known drug offenders
  • Allegation of repeated convictions in favor of defendants charged with drugs and other offenses from G. A. Vilingili.
  • Allegation of obstruction of justice.
  • Allegation he accepted bribes and authorized the release of suspects arrested from G. A. Vilingili and other islands in the region when presented for their remand hearings despite sufficient evidence to warrant detention.
  • Allegation he summoned police officers to the court and threatened them.
  • Allegation that he harasses police officers who attend court in connection to ongoing investigations, ridicules police officers in front of suspects, and defends suspects.
  • Allegation that he is deliberately delaying a case lodged with the G. A. Maamendhoo Magistrate over lack of compensation for illegal removal and use of trees that belong to a private citizen, in accordance with a prior court ruling.