PG Shameem: Haven't decided to drop case against ex-Home Minister Umar

Former Home Minister Umar Naseer. (Sun Photo/Ahmed Aiman Ali)

Prosecutor General Hussain Shameem said on Thursday that a decision has not been made to drop the case against former Home Minister Umar Naseer.

The Anti-Corruption Commission has requested the Prosecutor General’s Office to charge Umar with the misuse of official authority under Section 513 (b) of the Penal Code.

As per the commission, an investigation commenced in 2017 uncovered that the former Home Minister was involved in corruption while awarding a government contract to procure electronic tags used to monitor criminals.

The contact in question was awarded in 2015, to Stalwart Maldives, while Umar was serving as minister. ACC’s investigation further stated that the company had close ties with him, and all four shareholders of the company were close business associates.

Although ACC has forwarded the case to PG twice, with the most recent being on February 2021, it has been sent back to the commission on both instances.

Speaking about this case to Sun, PG Shameen said that the case was sent back the first time to complete some things that needed to be done before proceeding.

“It has been sent back a second time to ACC now, to further clarify some things. We said that ‘this and that' needs further clarification. So, they (ACC) are now doing that,” said Shameem.

"We will proceed with the case after obtaining everything needed to complete the investigation. A decision will be made after looking into everything.”

Previously speaking about the case, Umar stressed that there was no corruption involved in the procurement of the tags.

“The bid was announced and awarded to the applicant with the lowest price. We wrote to the ACC and obtained clearance before we awarded the bid,” said Umar.

Furthermore, Umar said that the winning company was in no way affiliated with him, not even through any of his family members. He added that no company with his or his family’s interest made a bid to the Home Ministry during his tenure as minister.