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Commissioner of Prisons warns action against jailed opposition leader following nationwide demonstrations.

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Today’s demonstrations held nationwide by the opposition alliance, the Progressive Congress Coalition has made its mark on the current political landscape. The demonstrators called for the immediate release of the former President Yameen Abdul Gayoom and to ensure the independence and impartiality of the judiciary, which has been the subject of allegations of rampant corruption and political influence.

Near the end of the demonstration n in the capital city, the demonstrators gathered in front of the opposition leader, former President Yameen Abdul Gayoom’s residence where he is currently kept under house arrest after having being transferred from jail following the COVID-19 outbreak.

The opposition’s Presidential Candidate, former President Yameen Abdul Gayoom appeared from the second-floor window of his residence and waved the national flag along with the flag of the main opposition party PPM. This was met with thundering applause from the demonstrators who were calling for his immediate release.

However, this has not been met well by the current administration as Commissioner of Prisons, Ahmed Mohamed Fulhu has stated that the former President had acted in contravention to an “agreement” by partaking in the demonstration. He also warned that he would launch an investigation and take necessary actions against the former President Yameen Abdul Gayoom.

Commissioner of Prisons Ahmed Mohamed Fulhu’s warnings was met with criticism from both the public and the opposition as many have pointed out that the current Home Minister Sheikh Imran Abdulla also partook in political events while under house arrest. Moreover, many also pointed to former President Mohamed Nasheed who fled the country under pretense on medical treatment, and was actively involved in political campaigning.

Many have also pointed to former Vice-President Ahmed Adeeb, who while under house arrest, formed a political party under the current administration.

The opposition coalition has also released a statement, affirming that there is no existing law which prohibits the former President form waving the national and party flag from within his residence and that no such agreements were made between the former President and the state which prohibits it. They also expressed concern on the Commissioner of Prison’s tweet, warning on taking action against the jailed opposition leader.

The protest come following the leaked audio tapes from the Maldives judiciary, involving three out of the five judges who passed the guilty verdict on the former President Yameen Abdul Gayoom. According to the leaked audio tapes, the judges where “held hostage” and passed the guilty verdict under duress. They affirmed that threats and inducements were offered by key members of the current administration including the President’s Office Chief of Staff Ali Zahir allegedly at the behest of President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih.

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Professor Ugail has said that the Hiyaa Flats must be given at affordable rates.

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Professor Ugail has expressed discontent with that raise in the prices of the Hiyaa Flats which was constructed under the presidency of Former President Yaameen Abdul Gayyoom.

In a recent tweet, professor Ugail has said that the Maldivian citizens shouldn’t be caught in between a competitive rally between the former and current governments. He has further said that the flats must be given out at the rates which were set during the Hiyaa Flat project planning. The flats should be given to the citizens with the required facilities, with safety in place and affordable rates.

 

Starting July 14th, the keys of the 7000 Hiyaa Flats are being handed out. To this point, 5519 people have signed the agreement to take ownership of the flats. The current government has decided that the monthly rate of the flats would be 7500 Maldivian rufiyaa. An additional 1000 rufiyaa will be taken as a management fee as well. This is 3000 rufiyaa more than what was decided during Former President Yaameen Abdul Qayoom’s term.

Hiyaa Flat Union has requested the government and HDC to lower the monthly rates of the flat. However, they have been repeatedly let down by saying that the rates cannot be decreased.

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“284 thousand foreigners have jobs in Maldives” – Economic minister.

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Economic minister Fayaz Ismail has stated that there are 284 thousand foreigners in Maldivian jobs.

Speaking at the Parliament regarding the number of foreigners in the Maldives, Fayaz Ismail noted that, from the statistics collected by the economic ministry there are 281000 foreigners live in the Maldives, of which 63754 hail from Bangladesh.

Minister Fayaz noted that including last year and this year, a total of 3000 foreigners have left their jobs and gone back to their country and that from 2019-2021 the government had released 11113 permits to bring Bangladesh workers to the Maldives. A number of Parliament members had shared their concerns regarding the increase in Bangladesh workers in the Maldives.

In the three years of this government, there have been countless jobs given to Indians. Minister Fayaz had not publicized the number of jobs that the government has given to Indians in the past three years.

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Discussions about advertising Maldivian guest houses in India by an Indian ambassador.

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Indians appointed ambassador for Maldives Sanjay Sudhir and Guest House Association of Maldives (GAM) discussed about advertising Maldivian guest houses in India to bring in more tourists.

Vice president of GAM Abdul Sameeu stated that in the discussions held in the Indian embassy in the Maldives, the ambassador had stated that they will give their support in advertising Maldivian guest houses to tourists in order to help GAM in their efforts. They had further stated that they will meet with Indian agents and guest house owners and discuss about this and help with the branding of GAM, as well as giving training to Maldivian guest houses room boys to managerial positions from Indian Institutes.

Abdul Sameeu further stated that there were discussions to get the support of the Indian high commission to collaborate on fairs and expos held there. Under GAM’s branding, there will be expos, fairs, award ceremonies, magazines, and a website. Abdul Sameeu informed that the Indian ambassador had stated that the Indian high commission will be giving their support for these endeavors.

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