Gasim clash seals end of pres Yameen, says disqualified MP

"Pinned under" opposition Jumhoory Party (JP) leader Gasim Ibrahim has "sealed the end of president Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom's government", disqualified lawmaker Abdulla Sinan said Sunday.

Customs along with the police had days earlier searched five resorts operated under the Villa Group umbrella owned by the resort tycoon Gasim later claiming that the four of the five resorts had an illegally acquired stock of pork and alcohol.

Customs meanwhile had seized and taken away the alcohol stock in Fun Island Resort late Saturday.

The once influential South-Machchangoalhi MP Sinan in a Tweet alleged that the security forces along with the courts are now challenging president Yameen's decisions.

"The refusal by the courts to issue an order to seize Gasim's properties and assets are enough evidence," Sinan added.

The former ruling party lawmaker was disqualified by the elections commission citing an anti-defection ruling by the Supreme Court after he along with 11 other MPs backed an opposition led motion to unseat the parliament speaker last year.

According to the authorities, the country's inland revenue authority had temporarily revoked the alcohol license of the four resorts over failure to pay taxes. However, the Villa Group had illegally diverted pork and alcohol from its sole license in one of the resorts to the rest.

The Villa Group remain adamant that it had not done anything illegal although the law clearly stipulates otherwise.

The opposition had called for protests claiming that the raids were politically motivated 'targeting' of a key opposition figure.

Gasim was convicted of bribery in August last year months after he inked a landmark pact with former presidents Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, Mohamed Nasheed and religiously conservative Adhaalath Party (AP) leader Sheikh Imran Abdulla to work against the government.

The business tycoon was granted medical leave to travel to Singapore where he had undergone a minor heart surgery in September before travelling to Germany.

Despite his leave expiring in late September, the former lawmaker had not returned claiming that no airline would allow him on board an air craft due to his ailing condition.

The tourism industry meanwhile, has expressed deep concern over the raids warning the government the adverse effects on its economy.