Thursday 25th Jul 2024
Dhivehi Edition
News Reports Sports Business
MMPRC scandal

Case raised to UK Home Office on Oittey’s refugee status

A complaint has been registered in the UK Home Office regarding the refugee status granted to Mohamed Hussain, commonly known as Oittey.
All work related to refugees are maintained by the Asylum and Protection Department of the Home Office.
The complaint was sent via a letter to Emma Haddad, the Director General for Asylum and Protection. The letter was supported with evidence on how Oittey had violated his refugee status and had requested the Office to review the matter.
The complaint was filed by a UK lawyer.
A close associate of former Vice President Ahmed Adeeb, he was suspected to have a hand in the assassination attempt on former President Abdullah Yameen. He was also suspected as an intermediary when the multi-million-dollar Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC) came into light.
He had fled the Maldives, amid several court cases. After surfacing in the UK, he was awarded refugee status in November 2018, claiming political persecution. In fleeing to London, they made the calculation that it was the easiest way to be safe from the then-administration.
English law is strict on conduct of all refugees. Any violations would terminate the refugee status and protection granted.
Clause 339A of Immigration Rules published by the UK Home Office is clear under which circumstance refugee convention ceases to apply. As such, 339A(i) states that refugee status no longer applies if the applicant has voluntarily re-availed themselves of the protection of the country of nationality. 339A(v) states that refugee status was no longer applicable because the circumstances in connection with which they have been recognized as a refugee have ceased to exist, continue to refuse to avail themselves of the protection of the country of nationality.
Actions such as making a Maldivian passport, going back to the Maldives, and entry into places such as embassies and consulates of the Maldives would constitute as violations of these terms.
Oittey last week, had given his testimony on the latest hearing of the money laundering and bribery charges leveled on President Yameen in connection to the sale of Aarah Island in Vaavu Atoll.
His statement was given as a witness for the state and in the presence of a representative of the state. With the immunity deal in place, Oittey was articulate in detailing his relationship with Adeeb and his role in facilitating any and all requests Adeeb made of him.
Oittey claimed refugee status citing political persecution. The red notices issued by Interpol was sufficient proof of his claims, at the time.
However, the revocation of Interpol red notices and the subsequent deal made with the state, in exchange for immunity from prosecution, disqualifies him from claiming his refugee status in the UK.
Oittey delivering a witness statement from the Maldives High Commission and in the presence of the second highest representative of the Maldives in the UK, is further proof that he is presently under no duress from the state.
The lawyer made note of all of these instances and had requested the Home Office to revoke refugee status granted to Oittey. The petition further said that Oittey’s actions made a mockery of the thousands who apply for refugee status under more valid conditions.