Parliament's Interim Committee on June 9 decided to grant the governing coalition's main party, Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP), control over all parliamentary committees.
The Parliament's most recent amendments resulted in the creation of 17 committees overall including the Security Services Committee (Committee 241). Before the amendment, there were 13 permanent committees including Committee 241.
Furthermore, the amendments made during the previous week designated that there would be 11 members in each committee.
The Secretary of Parliament submitted a paper which outlined that if each committee except Committee 241 were to have 11 members, there would be total 176 slots available.
As MDP possesses 65 members in parliament, the party received 132 slots. Accordingly, MDP would receive 8- 9 slots in all committees. Jumhooree Party (JP) and opposition Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) would each receive one slot respectively in 10 committees as they are represented in the parliament by five MPs each.
Moreover, with three MPs in parliament, People's National Congress (PNC) would receive one slot in six committees. While two parliamentarians represent Maldives Development Alliance, they would receive a slot each in four committees.
Additionally, there will be a single slot available for the seven independent MPs in 14 committees each.
According to the Constitution, Committee 241 must include members from all political parties within the Parliament. The amendments made with the Secretary's paper, however, revealed that MDP would hold the majority in Committee 241 as well.
MDP's MP for Central Henveiru, Ali Azim, proposed in the Committee meeting that there be 13 members in each committee if all parliamentarians agreed, stating that MDP wants to give more opportunities for all political parties.
Alifushi MDP MP Mohamed Rasheed Hussain also noted the importance of all parties being represented in the committees, and said that increasing the number of members in key committees would be beneficial. His statements received support from some MPs.
Furthermore, PNC MP for Maavah constituency and former Minister of Economic Development, Mohamed Saeed, proposed that Committee 241, Committee on Independent Institutions, Economic Affairs Committee, Public Finance Committee and the National Accountability Committee to each have 13 members.
However, the submitted proposals in the Committee meeting were not put to vote.