Parliament’s session extended to Dec 7

Speaker Mohamed Aslam chairs a parliamentary sitting. (Photo/People's Majlis)

The Parliament has decided to extend its current session – the third session of this year – to until December 7.

It was Speaker Mohamed Aslam who proposed extending the current session, citing multiple important works the Parliament is currently engaged in, including the 2024 state budget.

On Monday, the Parliament decided in favor of the extension with a majority vote of 52. Six MPs abstained.

The Parliament concluded the preliminary debate on next year’s budget on Sunday. Total 51 MPs engaged in the debate. The budget was not been sent to the Budget Committee, which will review it and send it back to the floor. The MPs will engage in a second debate on the budget, before taking the final vote.

The Parliament wasted the bulk of this year’s third session in a deadlock, as MDP attempted to push a no-confidence motion against former Speaker Mohamed Nasheed, while his new party, the Democrats, resisted.

MDP submitted the no-confidence motion against Nasheed with the endorsement of 49 MPs on October 9.

It was initially tabled for October 26, but had remained stymied after Deputy Speaker Eva Abdulla, Nasheed’s cousin and fellow Democrats member, called in sick all through that week.

The Parliament’s Secretariat had decided that only the Deputy Speaker can chair sittings in the event of a no-confidence motion against the Speaker.

This prompted the MDP to lodge a constitutional case with the Supreme Court, which, on November 9, found the Secretariat’s decision to halt the motion unconstitutional.

Nasheed resigned a few days later, on November 13.