High Court overturns travel ban on ex-VP Jihad

Former Maldivian Vice President Abdulla Jihad. (File Photo/Sun/Mohamed Afrah)

The High Court has overturned a Criminal Court ruling to stop former Vice President Abdulla Jihad from traveling to Dubai for medical care. 

Jihad is charged with misconduct in a situation of advantage to the state resulting in loss during his time in office. The matter was underway in court when he requested to travel abroad for medical care. 

Criminal Court judge Mohamed Sameer ruled in a hearing last December that Jihad will not be permitted to travel to Dubai. The ruling was appealed to the High Court by Jihad and the appeal court today overturned the lower court’s decision.

Jihad’s passport was held because the Criminal Court saw a high possibility that he may not return. 

The High Court stated that the order to hold Jihad’s passport was unlawful. All Justices on the bench agreed that the travel ban was unlawful, although there were some differences. 

These indifferences include whether the departure ticket and submission of the official form to the Criminal Court to obtain travel permission as per the regulations and procedures of the court could be used as evidence against the party requesting to travel. The justices were also conflicted over whether the charges against Jihad were major offenses.