Sitting suspended again, after MP accused of assault

MDP lawmakers protest inside the Parliament's chambers on November 13, 2023.

Deputy Speaker Eva Abdulla has suspended Monday’s parliamentary sitting again, after accusing a lawmaker from the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) of engaging in physical assault.

Two sittings were scheduled for Monday. The first sitting, at 09:00 am - where the government was set to present the 2024 state budget and the 2023 supplementary budget – was suspended due to lack of quorum after MDP lawmakers – who hold a supermajority at the Parliament – refused to enter the chamber.

The second parliamentary sitting - to hear a no-confidence motion against Speaker Mohamed Nasheed – began at 11:00 am. But the sitting was suspended twice, due to disruptions from both the MDP and Democrats – the party to which she and Nasheed belong.

Resuming the sitting for the third time, Eva placed the blame on both the MDP and her own party. She allowed several lawmakers to present points of order amid the chaos.

She named Hulhulhoo MP Ilyas Labeeb, a member of her own party, for disorder. But he refused to leave the chamber, and Kendhikulhudhoo MP Ahmed Easa – a political from MDP – attempted to drag Ilyas out by the hand.

Eva accused Easa of assault, and suspended the sitting again, due to the state of disorder.

The MDP has submitted a no-confidence motion against Eva, after accusing her of deliberately thwarting the one against Nasheed.