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Page added on March 7, 2013

President wanted “credit” for Maamigili Airport lease extension: former transport minister

President wanted “credit” for Maamigili Airport lease extension: former transport minister thumbnail

Former Minister of Transport Dr Ahmed Shamheed has criticised his removal from cabinet last year following the decision to extend the lease of Maamigili Airport by 99 years.

Shamheed has claimed that he was dismissed by President Dr Mohamed Waheed Hassan Manik following the approval of the airport lease extension because the president wanted to take credit for the decision.  The lease was given at the time to the Chairman of Villa Group, Gasim Ibrahim.

Last month, the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) began an investigation into the 99-year lease of the airport. According to the ACC President, Hassan Luthfee, the investigation is still ongoing.

Despite the investigation, President Waheed inaugurated Maamigili Airport last week (February 28).

Shamheed claimed that the decision to extend the airport lease had been made whilst former President Mohamed Nasheed had been in power, and that the decision was not one he had made on his own.

“It was the economic committee who had decided on the lease, I never decided on my own. It was initiated by the committee actually, that is how it started,” Shamheed alleged to Minivan News.

“It do not think it was the 99-year lease that was the problem, I heard from people close to him that he thought he should be the one making the decision. He thought he should take the credit for that.”

Shamheed was nominated to his former ministerial post by the government-aligned Jumhooree Party (JP) – of which Gasim is the party’s president.

Speaking back in November 2012, the former transport minister told local media that the documents to extend the airport lease for 99 years had been sent to the transport ministry by Nasheed’s government.

“The current government delayed the matter. The president government only endorsed the decision. It was decided by the NPC [National Planning Council] during the former government,” he was quoted as saying in local newspaper Haveeru.

President Waheed inaugurated Villa International Airport in Maamigili Island in south Ari Atoll on February 28.

Speaking at the ceremony, Waheed thanked Chairman of Villa Group, Gasim Ibrahim, before stating that he was greatly honoured to inaugurate the airport.

The main objective of making the airport an international airport was to improve the country’s transport system and the tourism industry, Waheed said during the ceremony.

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6 Comments on "President wanted “credit” for Maamigili Airport lease extension: former transport minister"

  1. Dhivehi on Thu, 7th Mar 2013 2:44 PM 

    Similar to all the other presidents, He is also willing to credit up some cash for evolving his party which is almost on the edge and and on the other hand campaign. Its hilarious to know that Dr Waheed is on the go for the coming election. I would suggests him the most ideal option is to run off the election saying he has done his duties and well I’m out from politics or else he may be on the most infamous list of wanted. He cant be showing off as too cool within the political system of Maldives. Sooner or Later he has has to watch his back. So no credit Sir!

  2. Jadhulla on Thu, 7th Mar 2013 4:36 PM 

    I THOUGHT HE SAID WHEN ACC IS INVESTIGATING SOMETHING THIS LAW ABIDING PRESIDENT SHOULD WAIT. SUCH ACTIONS WILL SHOW HIS DARK SIDE.

  3. Wow.. on Thu, 7th Mar 2013 4:41 PM 

    The buck stops with the President who is Shamheed’s boss. Even the decision to announce a decision has to be with the consent of the president.

    Shamheed here is admitting that he has gone over his boss.

    Is it unethical and even against administrative rules. This shows Shamheed is another cowboy, who wants to be on top

  4. Mohamed Naseem on Thu, 7th Mar 2013 4:44 PM 

    The People who come to Investigate will be corrupted they would have tipped of By Gasim Ibrahim. Man sitting in a JSC chair by the Parliament.

    The villa man on the run is only hobby making business out his Parliament chair and malty Party Democracy

  5. Ahmed Bin Addu Bin Suvadheeb on Fri, 8th Mar 2013 3:38 AM 

    @Wow.. on Thu, 7th Mar 2013 4:41 PM

    “Even the decision to announce a decision has to be with the consent of the president… Is it unethical and even against administrative rules.”

    Eh? Where did you learn “administrative rules”? In Babylon? Have you heard of “delegation of responsibility”?

    Why are there umpteen Ministers and Deputy Ministers and Deputy-Deputy Ministers, State Ministers, Deputy State Ministers and so on? Are they there to just keep the chairs warm and from time to time ask their “boss” for consent?

    Surely, all these chair warming butts are a total waste of money. Sack the lot and let the “boss” decide. There’ll be no further problems of deciding who deserves credit.

  6. hehe on Fri, 8th Mar 2013 4:35 PM 

    @Ahmed Bin S

    You are 100 percent right. The chair warming butts has to go.

    But you are a moron. Delegation of authority is not abdication of authority. Delegation only means flexibility to execute within CONSENT. Now cowboy behaviors.

    Please go to a school first.


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