Maldives National Defense Force (MNDF) is under scrutiny as it has spent more than MVR 3 million on the medical treatment of Chief of Defence Force Major General Abdulla Shamaal's mother. Over the past three years, the money has been spent on multiple admissions to ADK Hospital, with this year's expenses amounting to around MVR 2 lakh. Shamaal's mother has been staying in the hospital's most expensive room, while army personnel are on duty.
In an exclusive conversation with The Maldives Journal (TMJ), a senior MNDF official stated that Shamaal's mother did not require hospital admission and could have been cared for at home. The official raised concerns over the use of the most expensive room in ADK, paid for with MNDF funds, and the deployment of soldiers for this purpose.
MNDF has not provided any explanation regarding the policy under which these expenses were authorized. The media official did not respond to TMJ's inquiries before the publication of this story.
The allocation of MVR 3 million for the medical treatment of a single individual raises questions of fairness and potential corruption. Many Maldivians suffering from severe illnesses are left without access to adequate healthcare. The government has a history of providing preferential treatment for senior officials and their families, as evidenced during the COVID-19 pandemic. While the general public struggled for proper care in warehouse-like facilities in Hulhumale', President Ibrahim's mother received treatment at Dharumavantha Hospital, a facility described as a cave by President Ibrahim himself. This preferential treatment extended to other government associates during the pandemic, further highlighting the disparities in the healthcare system.