Tourism Minister Ali Waheed has revealed that there are records showing that a single island has been leased to three different parties for resort development.
At a recent press conference, Minister Ali Waheed stated that A.Dh Fushiggaa-Raiydhiggaa island had been leased to three different parties who had also made payments to the previous government for their lease agreements.
During the press conference, he stated that the ministry has been receiving multiple complaints regarding delays in the administration. Minister Ali Waheed explained that the delays are caused due to the ministry looking into matters.
“A lot of complaints are aimed at the government, that processes are being delayed. There are some delays. One such case is that of A.Dh Fushiggaa-Raiydhiggaa. The island has been leased to three different parties during the previous administration. We are talking about one asset. There are multiple such cases,” Minister Ali Waheed said.
He further said that the records show that former President Adbulla Yameen’s government took payments from these three parties for the island’s lease.
“One party paid US$ 100,000. Another paid US$ 1.3 million. So how can we speed up processes in this case? We cannot proceed in a manner that will not affect the involved parties. This administration will work according to the laws and the guidelines. We need to figure out a way to ensure none of the parties' rights are lost,” he said.
Minister Ali Waheed further said it has also come to the ministry’s attention that some of the information related to this specific case is not available at the ministry. He said that the case is being publicised to give people a dose of “reality”.
“We need to find out the details of these cases from the courts and the ministries. Internal investigations need to be conducted. There have been instances where documents were found and then lost. I received a call from a ministry right before this press conference, saying they have found a forged letter. The entire state has been turned upside down.”
Minister Ali Waheed said that there are multiple cases like that of Fushidhigga in the Tourism Ministry alone, and that relevant commissions are inquiring into many such cases.
“Once the government signs an agreement, it carries a lot of weight. These agreements were signed and stamped by the government. This makes the cases very complicated,” Minister Ali Waheed added.