Parliament adjourned due to lack of quorum after 4-hour wait

A sitting of the People's Majlis of Maldives. (Photo/ People's Majlis)

The Speaker of Parliament, Mohamed Nasheed has adjourned the sitting after waiting for four hours when the quorum of the parliament was not reached.

The sittings of parliament can only proceed if 22 members are present.

The meeting started at 09:00 am today and was delayed for four hours as the quorum was not filled. However, the meeting was adjourned after the quorum was still not filled by 13:00.

Nasheed said that it is very sad that the quorum was not filled after the sitting was delayed for four hours. He further said that it is important for the members to be present as there are many things on the agenda that need to be done.

“I think I may not have the experience to advise a political party. However, I can say that if you think that not attending parliament will increase your vote, it is a mistake,” Nasheed said.

He further said that the way to get acceptance and support from the people is by participating in advocating for them and that it is up to the parliament to hold the government, which is supposed to be for the people, accountable. 

The Speaker, Nasheed, asked the members of MDP, who hold the supermajority in the parliament, to be mindful of this. They refused to debate the topics that were on the agenda for today’s sitting.

On the agenda for today’s sitting included a resolution put forth by Maduvvari MP Adam Shareef calling for the government to start work to reclaim the maritime border that was lost as soon as possible and one put forth by North Maafannu constituency MP Imthiyaz Fahmy calling the government to uphold their pledge for a fair and independent election as the government is unjustly trying to influence elections.

However, some Members from MDP waited under umbrellas even after going to the parliament building, refusing to go in the floor and they accused the opposition of using the work of the parliament as part of their campaign.

Many MPs are absent as they are participating in different campaign events for the presidential elections. Since the third term began, two sittings had to be cancelled previously as the quorum was not met and with that, the remaining sittings were postponed to be held after the elections.

However, after the first round of the presidential elections, the parliament held a meeting last week as well.

The parliament has 85 members, all of whom take home a hefty salary with many allowances, which include free healthcare for family and themselves from the Maldives or Abroad.