Classifications Act and Evidence Act Ratified

President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih on Monday ratified the Classifications Act (Law No: 12/2022) and Evidence Act (Act No. 11/2022). Parliament passed these two bills at the 22nd sitting of its second session on June 30, 2022.

The Classifications Act specifies the criteria for classifying artistic productions imported to or produced in the Maldives. The Act’s primary purpose is to establish a system to ensure that artistic productions imported or produced for local audiences are categorised into appropriate age groups before publication.

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The National Bureau of Classification under the Ministry would be charged with its enforcement upon enacting the Act.

Upon ratification, the law has been published in the Government Gazette and is now in effect. The regulations mandated under the law must be published within three months of the Act coming into force. The regulations governing the grading and categorisation, classifying channels for rebroadcast licenses, and the review of literature publications produced in the country, pertaining to the General Regulations Act (Act No: 6/2008), would be repealed following the ratification of this act.

The Evidence Act specifies the procedures to be followed when gathering evidence in civil and criminal proceedings, as well as the processes to be followed when submitting, accepting, and evaluating evidence. It also specifies other evidence-related elements, such as the extent of evidence required to support a claim.

One of the primary purposes of the act is to ensure the necessary evidential procedures are detailed in the form of required actions so that the right to a fair trial, as per Article 42 of the Constitution, is satisfied.

Upon ratification, the bill was published in the Government Gazette and it will come into effect six months after the act being gazetted. Evidence Act (Act No. 11/2022) coming into force will repeal the existing Evidence Act (Act No. 24/76) and the Women’s Testimony Act (Act No. 14/72).

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