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UN Expert Welcomes Ratification of New Constitution In The Maldives

12 August 2008

Geneva:- - The Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers welcomes the ratification of the new Constitution by the President, on 7th August 2008. It demonstrates the progress made by Maldives towards the democratic principles and the rule of law, in particular, the independence of the judiciary.

The new Constitution is the culmination of almost four years of work of the Special Majilis (Constitutional Assembly). It establishes separation of powers and recognizes the independence of the judiciary. It also contains provisions for the establishment of a Supreme Court and the post of a Prosecutor General. Furthermore, the Constitution provides the creation of a Judicial Service Commission, an independent body, which will decide on appointment, dismissal and discipline for judges.

The Special Rapporteur notes that these provisions are in line with his recommendations, made after his visit to the country, in February 2007. The Special Rapporteur expresses his satisfaction and calls on the Government to effectively implement the Constitution.

For more information please call + 41 22 917 9377, or write to vlozano@ohchr.org