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Page added on October 27, 2010

Corruption Index ranks Maldives below Zimbabwe

Corruption Index ranks Maldives below Zimbabwe thumbnail

The Maldives has been ranked 143 in Transparency International’s 2010 Corruption Perception Index, equal with Pakistan and below Zimbabwe.

The ranking represents a fall of 15 places since the 2009 Index, which itself fell 15 places from the 2008 Index.

The Maldives is now ranked well below regional neighbours, including India (87), Sri Lanka (91) and Bangladesh (134). Denmark, New Zealand and Singapore ranked first, while Somalia ranked last at 178, below Burma and Afghanistan.

The Maldivian index was calculated using three different sources, explained Executive Director of Transparency Maldives, Ilham Mohamed. These were the Asian Development Bank’s Country Performance Index 2009, Global Insight’s Country Risk Report 2010, and the World Bank’s Country Policy and Institutional Assessment 2009.

“I think [the decline] reflects changes we are going through as a democracy – political instability is also considered when calculating the index,” Ilham said. “But this reflects the fact that the international community considers us more corrupt since 2008.”

Despite having a new constitution the Maldives does not have “the enabling legislation” in place to combat corruption, Ilham said. “We don’t even have a criminal code.”

She hesitated to say whether corruption was “a cultural problem”, because this was “a common justification in many Asian countries.”

“Nepotism is nepotism no matter where it happens,” Ilham said. “Howver it could be that the index reflects that practices such as patronage and gift-giving – which weren’t perceived as corrupt – are now beginning to be recognised as such.”

Corruption has maintained a high profile in the Maldives throughout 2010, most dramatically in July when recordings of phone conversations between MPs were leaked to the press. MPs were heard discussing plans to derail the taxation bill, implement no-confidence motions against ministers, buy someone called “Rose”, the Anti-Corruption Commission, and the exchange of “millions”.

People’s Alliances party (PA) leader Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom told Minivan News at the time that while a voice in the sound clips might have been his, the conversations were ”not to borrow money to bribe MPs… [rather] as friends, we might help each other,” he said.

Meanwhile, “I need cash”, a recorded comment from Independent MP Mohamed ‘Kutti’ Nasheed to an individual believed to be Jumhoree Party (JP) leader Gasim Ibrahim, quickly became something of a meme in the Maldives, with islanders in his constituency of Kulhudhufushi setting up a collections box on the beach.

However the debate quickly turned one of telecommunications legalities, with the Human Rights Commission of the Maldives (HRCM) issuing a statement condemning the recording of private phone calls.

Shortly afterwards parliament levelled a no-confidence motion at Education Minister Dr Mustafa Luthfy, the entire cabinet resigned in protest against the “scorched earth” tactics of the opposition majority parliament. The former ministers accused parliament of outright corruption and police arrested MPs Yameen and Gasim and charged them with treason and vote buying, for “attempting to topple the government illegally.”

Both were released when the Supreme Court overruled a decision by the High Court to hold the pair under house arrest for 15 days.

Police later that month arrested Deputy Speaker Ahmed Nazim, also of the PA, and ruling Maldivian Democratic Party MP Mohamed Musthafa on suspicion of bribing MPs and a civil court judge.

The Criminal Court ordered their release and several senior police lawyers giving evidence were suspended from court “on ethical grounds”.

Senior officers at the time expressed concern that investigations into “high-profile corruption cases” were compromised at “a very preliminary stage”, noting that the court had refused to even issue arrest warrants for a case involving more than a kilogram of heroin.

Police lodged that complaint with the Judicial Services Commission (JSC), which has yet to review any of the nearly 120 complaints it has received this year.

Earlier in the year Auditor General Ibrahim Naeem was also dismissed in a no-confidence motion by parliament shortly after demanding a financial audit of all ministers, past and present, including former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom.

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) found Naeem guilty of buying a tie and boat transport with government money, and he was summarily dismissed.

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29 Comments on "Corruption Index ranks Maldives below Zimbabwe"

  1. Praxis on Wed, 27th Oct 2010 5:15 PM 

    And today we heard that MP for Gemanafushi Constituency Mr Ilham Ahmed from DRP is awarding money and laptops for students in Gemanafushi school who scored good results.

    Isn’t this bribery and vote-buying, considering there is a local council election on 5th Feb 2011 as announced by the Elections Commission?

    And where in the world in a democracy do you find MPs saying they will contribute 50% of their earnings on the members of their constituency and giving out money like this to the public?

    I call it corruption.

  2. Mukhamed on Wed, 27th Oct 2010 5:20 PM 

    mazel tov. and yet, would we have it any other way ?

  3. Ahmed Aliased on Wed, 27th Oct 2010 5:33 PM 

    Ah, Maldives. A cryin’ shame, to have been born so beautiful, but to die so ugly.

  4. Mikael on Wed, 27th Oct 2010 5:42 PM 

    not surprising at all considering the current environment

  5. nepotism on Wed, 27th Oct 2010 6:37 PM 

    nepotism is so normal in Maldives people would be wondering if it is corruption at all..

  6. Alisaed on Wed, 27th Oct 2010 7:36 PM 

    @Ahmed Alisaed
    who is this head who thinks he is from outer space and keep commenting on everything ill in the maldivian community. Is he thinking he is the perfect guy with no shortcomings especially when he is high on his drugs!

  7. aussie on Wed, 27th Oct 2010 7:49 PM 

    The truth will come out and now that there are more information available and things are carried in open day light so it is natural to affect the index. If this was the case before we will be way below so the index before is not the true status but now it shows the true states thus the ranking will be much better if we take the true status of the index and might be an actual rise if really consider what has happened before (e.g parliament members taken to jail and dismissed on discretion, fraud of Air Maldives, rumors about MMA, election rumors, state companies fraud, loan star information, executives using funds and expenses, courts injustice and corruption, and so on..) these were never capture in the index before but today we are more transparent than before so I bet the index ranking today would better than before.

  8. Bismuth on Wed, 27th Oct 2010 9:41 PM 

    Establish the truth! That is as simple as that….But how? well! Simple but difficult. Each and every individual has to take the their personal responsibilities seriously.

    Find the Truth,Be the Truth, Be with the Truth.. And have purity of faith in Almighty God. The Creator, Evolver, Fashioner… Almighty God is the originator of all creations. One of God’s best creation, humans with their “free will” & ability to make choice is today going further away from guidance God sent for us. The simple message of the whole guidance is “Truth”.

    Humans and Jins is one of the best technology of Almighty God. Our “Rabb” (Lord), for he there is no partner. He is all knowing and most gracious, most merciful.

    The injustice, corruption and all evils are our own acts by deviating from the guidance and the message. “Corruption” is a killer of souls, minds and bodies. It is as equal to a cold blooded murder. But sadly the humanity had fell into the trap of deceptions and lies of Satan (the Devil, the mischief maker) and the system of Dajjal (The Deceiver or Deceivers).

    People! wake up from the sleep , wake up to the reality. We are one from a single source all connected universally. How much ever you accumulate fame, richness, power in this materiality the end is sure. Death. Death will end the role of a human in this world and his body dies, the soul returns to it’s Creator, the Almighty GOD. Do we argue about this? Do we realize we will be in error as several times in the glorious guidance of Quran God had reminded humanity to seek forgiveness from him for our wrongs. We shall never despair of Almighty Allah’s mercy. He Of-Forgiving. We should not follow the footstep of Satan for he is a despairer, from which his Arabic name “Iblis” came. Iblis means the one who despairs. you must have heard a simple message the people are trying to give “Don’t be sad”. That is actually sadness out of heedlessness of the mercy of Almighty GOD. Never give up hope to Satan, and fall to his corruptions. Guard our minds and thoughts (subconscious mind- which is where the Satan plays his most tricks)

    Standing with the truth, trying as best as we can to be the truth will erase our wrongs. Delete your wrongs with Good deeds. Say NO to Corruption for it is a killer in all sense.

    May Almighty Allah guide us to the truth.
    In Almighty Allah We Trust

  9. Bismuth on Wed, 27th Oct 2010 9:50 PM 

    Allah is Oft-Forgiving for those who sincerely tries to correct their errors.

  10. Corruption does not matter on Wed, 27th Oct 2010 11:28 PM 

    Being low in corruption index doesn’t mean that Maldives cannot still preach international norms of human rights and carbon neutrality to US and China.

  11. Hope April on Thu, 28th Oct 2010 12:09 AM 

    gluttony is never the answer, piety or less corruption always better, same holds for pride or failure to launch

  12. ali on Thu, 28th Oct 2010 1:55 AM 

    this is completely biased and if you call this journalism u would puke whn ever u hear abt it…you guys are unable to highlight even a single thing that this government is doing… government is off the chart and u guys called this rule of law.. supreme court is being locked bye the president… and no institution in the government listen to the order of the anti corruption commission which is the sole authority to stop corruption n u called this real transparency…no one knows how bids are being evaluated and projects are being awarded u still call this transparency…government denying to give information requested by the parliament…these are some of the real facts which everyone knows, but u guys are unable to quote them… auditor general naeem was dismissed by the parliament as he has used states money for his personal uses which shouldn’t be done by somone who is to audit the government institution. write something write about facts… everyone knows this minivannews is a mouth piece of this government… you guys try to make falsehood right… this is ridiculous.. try to do a bit of constructive journalism…….

  13. Khadeeja Hamid on Thu, 28th Oct 2010 3:37 AM 

    Yes. It is a shame that after a revolution, a moment when we all thought that we that “Anneh Raajeh” has been delivered, we hear news of how the Maldives today is ranked lower than Zimbabwe in the Corruption Index. Let’s get a few things right. Zimbabwe, has no freedom of speech, had had the same leader since independence and is in an economic crisis. The Maldives has a democratically elected government, we get to vote for our representatives in the people’s Majlis and we also have freedom of speech (at least according to the law). The sad thing however is that, all of our activists and all those people who were apart of the democratic movement thought that electing an MDP government would be the end of our struggles.
    We need to educate the masses so that our politicians would not be able to buy votes. We need to educate our people so that we would question our politicians and hold them accountable. We need to educate our people so that people would question policies rather than dig up dirt on personal histories of politicians.
    As far as nepotism in the Maldives is concerned, I cannot start to talk about that. If you look through the history of the country, this country, all its important positions, all its important decisions have been made my members of a few powerful families. Even though we are not a monarchy anymore, the same people who ruled the country then rules the country now.

  14. not surprised.. on Thu, 28th Oct 2010 3:44 AM 

    It all happened bcos of Nasir (ex president).Maldives is repeating the younger version of the same regime….

  15. Radhun on Thu, 28th Oct 2010 7:21 AM 

    Congratulations to our so called reformed and democratic Govt!! The facts says so and this govt is responsible and there is no doubt in people that corruption has surged sice this govt took over. The next thing is we will go back to where we started under least devolop country.

  16. glade on Thu, 28th Oct 2010 9:48 AM 

    “Despite having a new constitution the Maldives does not have “the enabling legislation” in place to combat corruption, Ilham said. “We don’t even have a criminal code”

    Just to state that we have an act to outlaw and combat corruption. Also we have a Penal code (if it means the same as ur criminal code)

  17. ibra on Thu, 28th Oct 2010 9:58 AM 

    this simply shows that the current regime is more corrupt than the previous regime. thanks to Anni and his anneh dhivehirajje

  18. ali on Thu, 28th Oct 2010 10:00 AM 

    you guys are starting to see the big picture of the anneh raahje (new maldives) portrayed by the activist government. i feel really sorry for my self as i hve voted this nepotistic thugs…i wonder what these thugs would hve done if they got the parlimant majority… if so they might hve outsourced the presidential office even…. finally the cat is out of the sack… now these guys will be blaming about the last 30 years…we need some patriotic leaders who r sincere n hve the courage n capacity to take our country to a safer shore….now u see the real picture of this thugs…

  19. Anybody on Thu, 28th Oct 2010 10:16 AM 

    Anybody who knows Maldivians deeply for more than ten years cannot but help feel angry towards Maldivians for the torture and corruption they put one another through. Hedonism, violence, but my real question is, what is the source of all of this>? WHy is this happening? More importantly, what is the solution?

  20. Anybody on Thu, 28th Oct 2010 10:21 AM 

    Maldives needs an honest, intelligent, selfless yet TOUGH leader, one who would be able to prosecute even his own Gradmother for corruption if need be the case! Maldives needs this leader to have absolute power…

    Oh, I forgot, no such human actually exists.

  21. from on Thu, 28th Oct 2010 11:16 AM 

    seriously… when, how will it all end

  22. Maakana on Thu, 28th Oct 2010 11:59 AM 

    Did anyone notice that it says corruption PERCEPTION index? It does not necessarily mean that the rate of corruption is higher. It’s the perception of corruption in maldives to third parties that is taken into consideration here…

    Minivan is misleading by putting “corruption index” on the heading. the missing word says a lot more about this..

  23. saeed on Thu, 28th Oct 2010 12:05 PM 

    My dear brothers & sisters,

    We have a President elected by the people of this beautiful island nation for a 5 year term as per Maldives Constitution.

    If we are discussing on CORRUPTION, let’s discuss on the BARRIERS that we have. We all know that we have an independent Judiciary. We also know our Judiciary is waiting for the Bills that our Judges require to do their work. We also know that these Bills shall be coming from the Majlis.

    So dear my friends, let’s try our best to convince the MPs of the IMPORTANCE of these Bills without any further delay.

    When all of us are waiting for these Bills, drugs and murder cases are increasing day by day and our Judges are working with almost empty hands and that drug-dealers and murderers are coming out of the Courts waving & laughing…..SO SAD for a Democratic & Muslim country, isn’t it????

    Of course, the Power Hungry people would always try to make the people blame the Head of State though Head of the Judiciary and Head of the Parliament (Majlis)are 2 different persons.

    I think we have to understand that issues and concerns related to a country’s Judiciary shall be handled by the Head of Judiciary. Not by the country’s President nor by the Parliament. It’s the Judiciary that shall tell the people why the Judges are unable to provide a service that the people accept…..veemaa, Javvah, havayah, fazaa ah, emmefahun bolah

  24. Bettina on Thu, 28th Oct 2010 12:30 PM 

    Minivan, your headline is a very misleading. It is not the Corruption Index but the Corruption Perception Index, perception been the key word here. Sensational reporting at its worst.

    It would also be worthwhile to note that the index is not in anyway a reflection only on the executive but rather a reflection on the whole state, an important distinction to make.

    Also once again do note that this is about perception and the index is not a true indicator of the actual amount of corruption in the country. That been said perception should not be down played. In the end it is the perception that is going to matter.

  25. Aishath Maleesha on Thu, 28th Oct 2010 1:19 PM 

    1. STO software bid
    2. STO credit to MP’s private companies.
    3. MP’s daughter being promoted to the post of deputy minister at Foreign ministry after MP votes against the no confidence motion.
    4.MP’s being paid to change party alliances with political post being given to their relatives.
    5.Awarding of Hilaaleege contract without proper bidding to a state minister’s fathers company.
    6.MP’s son being awarded housing project two weeks prior to the MP changing side.
    7.MP’s being accused of bribing judges yet party does not suspend or take any action. (both MDP & DRP)
    8.IGMH medical contract being awarded to company whch does not hold import permit for pharmaceuticals.
    9.Thilafushi land lease to people politically alligned with the government.
    10. Favoritism shown to party aligned companies and people when awarding lucrative contracts
    there are numerous cases corruption within the last 2 years that has gone unstopped due to there alignment with the current government.The MDP government has failed in keeping there promises in regards to stopping corruption.Most officials are more concerned with keeping political heavy weights happy an ignores corruption by simply saying go to court. The biggest obstacle to combat corruption is that we have a parliament full of thieves and robbers and the president and all other institution are being controlled by them.The president cannot say or do anything against corruption that is rife with the influence of his own parties MP’s and buying of votes.

  26. saeed on Thu, 28th Oct 2010 2:00 PM 

    Aishath,

    I have a simple question for u madam,

    1. Do u have evidences to prove those corruptions or crimes?

    2. If so, do u believe that it’s your responsibility to share those information with the relevant authorities or lodge complaints to the relevant authority or authorities?

    3. Is it the President who investigates corruption related cases or the Anti Corruption Commission (ACCA?

  27. Anonymous on Thu, 28th Oct 2010 4:22 PM 

    Saeed,

    I have proof. I personally know the MP’s daughter who got promoted to the post of Deputy Minister after his dad voted against the vote of no confidence.

    X

  28. Ekaloa on Fri, 29th Oct 2010 8:22 AM 

    Saeed dude which authority you are talking about, the same corrupt authorities, if you take anything who will investigate those allegations.If they got proper information on corruption list Maldives should be on the bottom below even Somalia.

  29. commenter on Sat, 30th Oct 2010 10:37 PM 

    its due to the new government of Maldives i guess


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