Male’ International Airport 30 June 2010. The opposition parties campaigning against the awarding of Male’ International Airport on Monday took the issue to the civil court, requesting a court order delaying the implementation of the agreement signed between the government and the GMR-Malaysia Airport Holdings consortium. The case was filed hours before President Mohamed Nasheed announced that his entire cabinet was resigning due to the “scorched earth” tactics of opposition MPs. Spokesperson for the joint opposition committee, Imad Solih, said on Monday that the parties had sought an injunction against the agreement proceeding “because it contains suspicious [elements] and issues relating to corruption.” Secretary General of the People’s Alliance, Ahmed Shareef, said there were “many issues of concern” which pointed to corruption in the deal. Shareef also accused the government of not consulting the Maldives Airports Company board members when making the deal. The government’s close relationship with GMR is one of the issues we presented to the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC).” He said these issues indicated that there were other concerning issues the party believed could potentially suggest corruption. ”The four opposition parties are against this deal,” he...Read More
Lale Youth International School 28 June 2010. A report by the Human Rights Commission of the Maldives (HRCM) into Lale Youth International School on Hulhumale has recommended that the Education Ministry terminate its contract with Maldives-registered company Biz Atoll Pvt Ltd to manage Lale Youth International School, “and hand over management as soon as possible to a qualified party. The government-run Fareediyya School was handed to Biz Atoll and a group of philanthropic Turkish businessmen in 2008, under an agreement made between Biz Atoll and the Education Ministry during the former administration. The HRCM report also recommended that the school move to “dismiss employees with criminal records” and amend the school’s child protection policy to ensure that “inappropriate persons” did not work with students, and amend employment contracts “to allow adequate disciplinary action” against those suspected of physical abuse. The HRCM report also raised concerns about the school’s adherence to employment practices in the Maldives, noting “allegations of discrimination and mistreatment of Asian and Maldivian staff”. It recommended the school establish both a school board, as required by law, and a mechanism for teachers to resolve employment issues. Furthermore, the Education Ministry should formulate regulations governing international schools “to ensure supervision and monitoring by the ministry as a regulatory body”, and “establish guidelines to conduct follow-ups to supervision reports.” HRCM has recommended the government repossess Lale School from Biz...Read More
Former President, Maumoon Abdul Gayyoom 27 June 2010. Corruption is rife in Male International Airport privatisation process, according to the Dhivehi Rayyithunge Party (DRP), the Peoples Alliance (PA), the Dhivehi Qaumee Party (DQP) and the Jumhooree Party (JP). The opposition parties have signed an agreement to work against the privatisation process. The president of DQP, Dr. Hassan Saeed and the president of People’s Alliance, Abdulla Yameen said that the government’s haste in the bidding process, at a time when there is a bill pending in the Majlis which would regularise the process of selling public assets, is troubling and a case would be lodged with the anti-corruption commission. President Nasheed has said that with privatisation, “the government will be able to save over US$300 million in investments.” The government had launched the airport tender process in October 2009. The President said the International Financial Corporation, a member of the World Bank Group, worked with the government throughout the process, and he was “confident the tender process was transparent and ensured there was no room for...Read More
Maldives Airport 25 June 2010. Indian company GMR Infrastructure has said it is confident it will win the bid for Male’ International Airport, after offering US$78 million (Rf1 billion) upfront. “Considering the offers, we will get the highest marks. We will make the payments and take over the operations of the airport in March,” newspaper Haveeru reported one official as saying. Finance Minister Ali Hashim disclosed the bids at a function today. Bids at a glance: GMR-KLIA: US$78 million upfront and one percent of the total profit in the first year (until 2014), and 10 percent of the profit from 2015 to 2035. GMR would also pay 15 percent of fuel trade revenues to the government in the first four years and 27 percent from 2015 to 2035. Turkish TAV Airports Holdings Company and French Airports De Paris: US$7 million (RF89.95 million) upfront payment, with 31 percent of the total profit until 2014 and 29.5 percent from 2015 to 2035. The consortium offered 16.5 percent of the profits from fuel trade. Swiss Flughafen Zurich AG and GVK Airport Developers offered US$27 million (Rf346.95 million), along with 27 percent of the total profit in the first four years and nine percent of the profit from 2015 to 2035. The consortium said it would pay nine percent of fuel revenues to the government. The Jumhoory Party (JP), led by Gasim ‘Buruma’...Read More
Former President, Maumoon Abdul Gayyoom 25 June 2010. Former President, Maumoon Abdul Gayyoom has lodged a defamation case against the managing editor of Miadhu Daily, Abdul Latheef, after the news company reported a New York Times article alleging corruption during Gayyoom’s 30 year regime. Gayyoom wishes to receive financial compensation for defamation of his character, reports Miadhu Daily. Miadhu Daily claims it has not published any information not included in the New York Times article, and the Miadhu report referenced the original report. Miadhu Daily says it views the New York Times as an international media news source, which it used because the information was relevant to the Maldives. Miadhu Daily reports that Waheed said Gayyoom’s legal team is investigating if the former president can take legal action against Gayyoom’s former cabinet minister, Ahmed Abdulla, who is CEO of Miadhu Daily, and the team is also preparing a case against the New York Times. The New York Times article said the current Maldivian government is working to reclaim US$ 400 million allegedly stolen from public coffers during Gayyoom’s administration. The former president has also lodged a defamation case against Ali Hashim, the current finance minister, after he was quoted in the New York Times report saying that if the allegedly looted money could be reclaimed, the current government would not need the foreign aid it is seeking...Read More
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