In any country except the Maldives, it would be shocking to see so many high profile resignations from judicial posts as we saw in recent years, including those of some of the best legal brains in the country such as Husnu Suood and Ahmed Muiz. However, in the Maldivian government services, dominated as it were by bureaucrats who insist professionals must be paid less than them, such resignations are taken in the stride. It is therefore very welcome that the Judicial Service Commission has proposed more reasonable salaries for judges.
Judges and lawyers are highly educated professionals with earning potential far surpassing the salaries they are paid in government service. While it may not be possible to fully compensate them, a reasonable salary is the minimum they deserve.
Enhancing the salaries of judges alone may not be enough to raise the quality of the legal system in the country. Lawyers also must be paid reasonable compensation and retained in the government service. The recent fiasco about lawyers in the Civil Service was eminently avoidable.