Former President Mohamed Nasheed, poised to assume the role of Secretary-General of the Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF) next month, remains a member of the Maldivian Parliament, creating a rare intersection for the interpretation of the Maldivian constitution.

Nasheed, who had earlier announced his withdrawal from active politics, has yet to resign from his parliamentary seat for Mahchangolhi Central, despite his impending role at the CVF. His term as an MP, which began on 28 May 2019, is set to conclude in May next year, leaving six months of overlap with his new international position.

The situation presents a notable conundrum: while Nasheed resigned as Speaker of Parliament, he continues to work abroad for the CVF, a global association dedicated to addressing the impacts of climate change on vulnerable nations. His decision to stay on as an MP, at least for the time being, has been confirmed by both the Democrats Parliamentary Group Leader, Ali Azim, and the parliamentary office.

Nasheed’s dual roles raise questions about the compatibility of serving in a national legislative body while leading an international organisation. Under the Maldivian Constitution, MPs are prohibited from holding any other public office, but it does not explicitly forbid holding positions in foreign organisations or countries. This distinction provides Nasheed with a potential loophole to navigate both responsibilities.

In his statement earlier this month, Nasheed emphasised his belief that serving as the CVF’s Secretary-General would enable him to make more meaningful contribution to the Maldives. The CVF, which includes the Maldives, focuses on mitigating the effects of climate change in the world’s most vulnerable nations.