Speaker of Parliament Mohamed Nasheed, on Tuesday, expressed concerns over the numerous allegations of sexual misconduct and rape against former Minister of Tourism Ali Waheed.
Prosecutor General's Office, on November 18, raised a total of six charges of sexual abuse against Waheed, including two counts of sexual abuse, two counts of unlawful sexual contact, a single count of attempted sexual abuse, indecent exposure and a single count of attempted rape.
As per the Speaker's messages on the national WhatsApp group of the Maldives Democratic Party (MDP), Nasheed noted various discrepancies in the Maldivian judicial system, stating that certain individuals were treated differently.
Nasheed also said that he was shocked upon reading Waheed's statements.
After being summoned to Maldives Police Service for the first time since the claims surfaced, Waheed described the accusations against him to the media as a "politically motivated" matter.
He added that the allegations of sexual harassment raised against him were a scandal planned by a group of people, and claimed that a fair investigation will prove his innocence.
Waheed is among a number of politicians facing accusations, amid a string of high- and low-profile sexual abuse, sexual assault and harassment cases that surfaced in 2020.
Several protests have been held by various rights groups and activists in the past, demanding perpetrators and authorities to be held accountable and justice ensured for victims and survivors.
However, public ire continues to soar over the government's meagre record of arresting and convicting perpetrators of sexual offences despite several promises to support the rights of children and women.