'Pres will face graft probe,' but Nasheed vows fair trial

Incumbent president Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom will be investigated for allegations of mass corruption, former president Mohamed Nasheed insisted Thursday but assured that the outgoing president would get a free trial.

Speaking to local reporters after returning to the Maldives from exile on Thursday, Nasheed insisted that there was sufficient evidence to support the graft allegations facing president Yameen.

Amid rumours that the opposition had cut a deal to allow president Yameen to flee the country, Nasheed was asked if he had spoken to the outgoing president since his election defeat in September.

"No. I haven't had any discussions with president Yameen. There are serious allegations of corruption and embezzlement against him. I believe there are enough evidence to substantiate those allegations. So when our government assumes office, an independent investigation will be conducted," Nasheed explained.

"The investigation will be independent. And president Yameen will get a free trial."

President Yameen has been linked to the biggest corruption scandal in the country's history.

Yameen's former vice president Ahmed Adheeb Abdul Ghafoor who had been jailed over the scandal has repeatedly accused the president of sanctioning the embezzlement of millions of dollars from the state coffers.

Yameen lost the September 23 election by a margin of 16 percent to opposition alliance candidate, Ibrahim Mohamed Solih, in an outcome hailed as a win for democracy in the crisis-hit archipelago.