MP Rozaina seeks ban on involvement of guards of opposite sex in expulsion of MPs

Screen grab from video of female security officers handling male MPs on February 6, 2023.

Addu Meedhoo MP Rozaina Adam presented a resolution on Monday, seeking to amend the Parliament’s regulations so only security officers of the same sex can be involved in the expulsion of MPs from the Parliament’s chambers.

The first reading of the resolution was conducted during the parliamentary sitting Monday morning.

The resolution seeks to amend Article 23 (e) of the Parliament’s regulations.

The resolution follows the incident on the inaugural sitting last week, when several MPs were asked to leave the chambers for disorder. The MPs – all of them males – refused to leave the chambers. Female security officers were tasked with forcefully expelling them from the chambers.

Rozaina said in her resolution that videos and images of female officers touching and dragging the MPs had gone viral, and were perceived by many as a violation of community standards.

She said it had led to the female security officers getting subjected to intense harassment on social media.

Rozaina said she believed the policies of the Parliament when it comes to the maintenance of security must be similar to that enforced by other institutions.

Rozaina proposed banning everyone from the chambers, except for those with permission, when a session is in progress.

In a situation that requires expulsion of a person from the chambers, only internal security officers of the same sex as the person getting expelled must be involved, she proposed.

Rozaina referred to policies by the police, Customs, and Immigration, when it comes to searching suspects.

She said that the Parliament had previously enforced the same policies.

The Parliament’s regulations must be amended to ensure this does not happen again, she said.