The Maldives High Court on Sunday ordered the release of former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom on bail, seven months after he was arrested as part of a crackdown on the Opposition. He is accused of conspiring to overthrow the government of his half-brother, President Abdulla Yameen.
However, Yameen lost the presidential election on Saturday after the country’s Election Commission declared opposition leader Ibrahim Mohamed Solih the winner. Solih had urged Gayoom to release political prisoners following his victory.
The High Court released Gayoom on a bail of 60,000 rufiyaa (Rs 2.83 lakh), and asked him not to travel abroad without permission, Al Jazeera reported. Gayoom was serving a 19-month jail term for obstruction of justice and was also under trial for “terrorism”.
“Finally, they are all home,” Gayoom’s daughter Yumna Maumoon said on Twitter. “Hope and pray that all political prisoners will be released soon. The nightmare is finally over Insha Allah. Thank you all who struggled hard for this day.”
Dissident Qasim Ibrahim, a businessman, was also granted bail. However, he has obtained prison leave for medical treatment and is currently in Europe.