Male' City Mayor and former Housing Minister Dr. Mohamed Muizzu has expressed concern regarding the lack of support from the ministries and state-owned enterprises for the Male' City Council's responsibilities mandated by law.
Speaking to Male' City's Hulhumale' residents in relation to the land use plan mandated to the council in accordance with the Decentralization Act, Dr. Muizzu has specified the council's jurisdiction and legal responsibilities. He noted the lack of support from the government and state-owned companies.
During the meeting on Monday, the mayor stated that the obstacles to the council's fulfillment of its responsibilities have been discussed with President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih, and that he has requested the President for support to carry out the efforts. He claimed that he requested the municipal staff of Housing Development Corporation (HDC) and its budget to be transferred to the City Council. However, three months after his request, all the President has to say was that he shares the same views with the mayor.
Dr. Muizzu revealed that he has met with HDC and the Ministry of Finance on several occasions regarding the matter, and although they claimed it was no big issue, his request remains unfulfilled many days later.
It is extremely difficult for the government to heed the council's requests, and it is greatly concerning that the government does not inform the council of activities conducted within its jurisdiction, said Muizzu.
"There is no correlation between their words and actions. We want to share with you all tonight, our hardships, concerns, and efforts to do these things. You all know that we are not sitting idle, and despite the conditions, your councilors have done what they can in any way that they could. We have no opportunities to do as we want here. We only have a small room, and about four staff... A small area that wouldn't even count as a unit", he said.
The mayor stated that he requested additional space even if it is from Hulhumale', but HDC claimed there is not much space in Hulhumale'. Dr. Muizzu iterated that the Male' City Council has to ask permission from HDC to conduct activities on land that is under the council's jurisdiction. "The public must tell us what kind of rule this is", the former Housing Minister expressed his displeasure.
"HDC must discuss all projects with the council before they are conducted"
Noting that Hulhumale' is under the council's jurisdiction declared by the President and that the law dictates the council's activities to be conducted on the land, Muizzu stressed that HDC does not share all its intended activities with the council. "The law states that all projects must first be discussed with the council. HDC initiates, conducts, finishes several projects every day, nothing is discussed with the council".
According to the mayor, the council has repeatedly sent letters with attached charts to remind HDC not to do so. "Don't do this. You are mandated to discuss all projects in Hulhumale' with the city council", he revealed the numerous advisements to HDC.
"I don't know if the President has given them the power to act above the law, I don't know what is happening. They are working outside the charts".
Muizzu explained that the law also requires the ministries to discuss all projects with the council and consider the citizens' thoughts. He said despite repeated requests, the ministries have denied the council the opportunity to carry out its responsibilities. The mayor has always spoken of the government's lack of support.