MMPRC graft: Central bank audit sent to police

The audit conducted on central bank Maldives Monetary Authority (MMA) on suspicions of negligence that aided the MMPRC graft has been concluded and sent to the police head quarters for further investigation.

Governor Ahmed Naseer confirmed to AVAS that the audit has been completed and the findings were sent to the police last week. A second audit has been tasked to an international audit group, the governor revealed.

"After the ACC [Anti-Corruption Commission] report was concluded, we conducted our own internal review. The findings of this review have been shared with the police. Further investigation will reveal if criminal offenses took place or not", said Naseer.

He dd not reveal any findings identified through the audit conducted by the bank.

A detailed report recently publicized by ACC on the MMPRC graft accused negligence on the part of Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of the central bank when the graft was being executed. Following the accusations, the head of the unit resigned from his position, while a senior staff of the unit has been changed to another post of the bank. A new head has been appointed for the FIU.

MVR 1.22 billion of state funds were embezzled through Maldives Marketing anc Public Relations Company (MMPRC) during former President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayyoom's presidency. The ACC conducted a criminal investigation into the scandal and published a special report on the graft, which named some of the recipients of the funds through SOF Pvt Ltd, the company that had been the focal point in moving the embezzled funds.

The governor announced last December that any corrupt dealings which occurred through MMA would be investigated by a separate body, in order to restore trust in the financial policies of the Maldives.

International media Al-Jazeera produced a special documentary on the MMPRC scandal named 'Staling Paradise'. The documentary details how the funds were embezzled through the Maldivian financial system.