President Solih has dismissed Hussain Amr, the Managing Director and chairman of the State Trading Organization (STO), one of the largest state-owned enterprises in the Maldives. The decision came as a surprise to many, as Amr was one of the most high-profile political appointees in the current administration.
The reason behind the dismissal, according to sources within the government, is Amr's political alignment with President Nasheed. Nasheed recently started his own political movement within the ruling Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP), following his loss in the MDP primary elections held earlier this year.
Amr is openly aligned with Nasheed, and last week he met with senior officials from the Jumhoory Party on behalf of Nasheed. This move was seen as an effort to work together in the upcoming presidential elections.
President Solih reportedly tried hard to convince Amr to switch sides, even offering him the portfolio of the finance ministry. However, Amr remained loyal to Nasheed, which ultimately led to his dismissal.
Amr's removal has raised questions about the government's stance on political appointments, especially in state-owned enterprises. Some have criticized the decision as being politically motivated and based on personal differences rather than professional performance.
The STO is responsible for importing oil, general goods, construction materials, staple food, and other essential items to the Maldives. The organization plays a vital role in the country's economy, and its management and performance are closely monitored by the government.
The government has not yet announced who will replace Amr as the Managing Director and chairman of the STO. The company's CFO is filling in for Amr as interim head. However, the decision is expected to be made soon, given the importance of the organization's operations to the country's overall economic performance.