Maldives National Defence Force (MNDF) on Saturday denied claims made by Addu Meedhoo MP Rozaina Adam about a child rape involving two of their officers.
MNDF contended that authorities have not brought such an incident to their attention.
At the emergency meeting held by the Parliament Committee for Human Rights and Gender on Friday evening, prompted by the sexual violence case against a two-year old toddler in Kanduhulhudhoo in Gaafu Alif Atoll, MP Rozaina expressed concern that relevant authorities have failed to take required actions despite a number of people reporting such cases.
She went on to say that she herself had submitted a case to the police, after a mother who had filed a case earlier against two MNDF officers for raping her 15-year old daughter went uninvestigated.
Referring to the case, MP Rozaina highlighted that the 15-year old girl was further victimized on Facebook, and said that she wondered how many more children have fallen victim to such violence.
In light of MP Rozaina’s remarks, MNDF in a press statement responded that they had not received any information about such an incident involving their officers. The statement further read that neither MP Rozaina nor the police could confirm that the incident took place, nor those who committed the crime.
MNDF further assured that if such a horrendous incident were to be reported to them, an immediate inquiry would have been launched with actions taken against those responsible.
The news of the police investigation into the sexual abuse case of the two-year-old child in Kanduhulhudhoo shook the country on Thursday.
Outraged citizens gathered in front of Ministry of Gender, Family and Social Services in capital Male' City on Friday afternoon, demanding action against people whose negligence compromise the safety of children.
Some participants called for gender minister Shidhatha Shareef's resignation, criticising the government for failing to protect the welfare of children.
Police on Saturday disclosed that three men were arrested in connection to the crime. Two of the three men, the victim’s 62-year old grandfather and 81-year old great-grandfather, face sexual abuse charges against the two-year-old, while the victim’s father, 33, is accused of negligence.
The two-year-old victim is currently with her maternal family, under state care.