'Supplementary budget proposed in violation of the law'

The government has requested a supplementary budget for the current year in clear violation of the law, Maduvvari MP Adam Shareef has said.

Finance Minister Ibrahim Ameer requested the Parliament to supplement this year's MVR 37 billion budget with another MVR 5.8 billion. Presenting the budget for next year in Parliament in late October, Minister Ameer had said the volatile global economy has increased expenditure, and that the Russian-Ukrainian war had put pressure on the budget due to rising oil and commodity prices. The request for a supplementary budget has now been approved by the Budget Committee.

While debating the committee's report on the supplementary budget, MP Adam Shareef Tuesday said although the government holds a supermajority in the Parliament, it is not a legal right of MPs to present the supplementary budget as it is now and action should be taken against them.

“If the budget is passed like this, the Maldives will go bankrupt,” Sharif said.

During the budget debate, Shareef made serious accusations against the MDP government and its MPs. He alleged that the government has already spent from the supplementary budget.

Speaking to AVAS, Shareef said the government will not be able to spend MVR 5.8 billion in accordance with the SOPs during the remaining month of the year. He said the Finance Ministry has informed the Parliament that the additional funds are needed to pay salaries and as capital to improve the cash flow of some government companies.

Shareef also said the government has no intention of improving the Maldives' economic situation. The biggest proof of that is the government printing money because of the lack of foreign aid, he claimed. The result of the move would increase inflation, and the poor will get poorer and the rich will get richer, he said.

"The government has been taking money from the pension fund and is running out of funds. This government cannot put the money back into the fund. The loss is to the people," Shareef said.

Shareef further said the government is not working on development projects such as improving economic infrastructure. However, he accused the state of using state funds to distribute to relatives and close acquaintances. He alleged that MVR 1.9 billion had been distributed to various parties in recent years.