State appeals decision to release ex-Tourism Minister Ali Waheed’s passport

Former Tourism Minister Ali Waheed arrives at Criminal Court on January 24, 2021. (Sun Photo/Fayaz Moosa)

The Prosecutor General’s Office has appealed the decision by the Criminal Court to lift a travel ban order on former Tourism Minister Ali Waheed, allowing him to travel overseas while on trial for multiple sexual offenses including attempted rape.

The Prosecutor General’s Office confirms they filed an appeal with the High Court this Sunday.

Ali Waheed left for London mere hours after the Criminal Court overturned the travel ban order following a review on February 9. The court released his passport for the period of four months after orthopedic Dr. Yoosuf Shan testified that he needs to undergo a backbone surgery. Ali Waheed’s aide, State Minister for Sports Assad Ali (Adubarey) signed as his bail guarantor.

The Prosecutor General's Office said in a previous statement that they asked the court to issue Ali Waheed temporary travel papers instead of releasing his passport.

Prosecutor General’s Office said that they have yet to receive the papers signed by Assad Ali as Ali Waheed’s guarantor, even as they filed the appeal this Sunday.

Ali Waheed was dismissed as Tourism Minister on July 9, 2020, after allegations that he sexually assaulted and harassed multiple female employees at the Tourism Ministry was brought to the attention of President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih. He was initially asked to voluntarily resign, but was dismissed after he refused.

He has been pressed with seven charges; attempted rape, inflicting a sexual, indecent exposure, sexual assault, attempt to cause sexual assault, and two counts of unlawful sexual contact.

He pled not guilty to all seven charges during his arraignment at the Criminal Court on January 24.