President’s address to the nation on 52nd Independence Day

Beloved Maldivians,

Today, we have moved our national strive beyond our boundaries, into the international arena to compete with professionals and experts of international stature. Today the national debate should be about whether we as a nation, have what it takes to strive and win the international race. While Maldivian athletes have risen to compete in regional finals our students are contesting in the highest recognised global academic awards. This is the time for us to dedicate all our energy and resources to win in the race for excellence.

It is my mandate to prioritise our resources and organise our troops to optimise our national output and achieve our full potential as a people. It is my duty to eliminate disparities and minimise discord; existing and created with intent, within the people.

In the past four years, we have undertaken developmental work, unparalleled to any other developmental era. Initiatives which were badly needed yet side lined. Developmental goals that should have been attained. Had these goals been realised we would have achieved milestones in development and increased the standard of living for Maldivians.
Development projects such as the:-

– Expansion of Velana International Airport to cater for modern day aircraft and the required services, to cater for its expectations as the symbol of Maldivian national pride.

– Expansion of health services at IGMH, including the opening of the new 25 storey building, along with the new developments in Hithadhoo and Kulhudhuffushi Regional Hospitals enabling advanced services, which will bring an end to inconveniences faced by Maldivians who have to seek treatment abroad, away from families for major illnesses.

– Development of Hulhumale’ and the new housing development projects will enable blissful family lives.

– The Male-Hulhule’ Bridge will bring an end to the era of logistical obstacles faced by Maldivians who live in separate islands.

– 30 new resorts that are expected to open by the end of next year will create 18,000 job opportunities.

– Current projects underway to provide water and sewerage systems to 75% of the population, 33 completed ports and 39 ongoing ports projects, along with the current road development projects in 13 islands, will pave the way to solve most of the logistical obstacles faced by island residents in their everyday lives.

Each and every one of these projects, are a milestone of its own, will create job opportunities and enhance the quality of life for the people.

Beloved Maldivians,
Peace and tranquillity is the Maldivian Brand Name. Maldives is “paradise on earth”. Maldivians are the icons for hospitality and friendly hospitability. The endless stretches of white sandy beaches are a safe haven, even for the most vulnerable of small birds.

Yet, today we are forced to acknowledge that this peace and harmony is facing the threat of extinction. We hear alarm bells, reminding us that the days of peace and tranquillity might be waving adieu to the beaches of the Maldives. Drums of anger and disruption are being beaten. The spotless white beaches without footsteps which we once, roamed about are now tainted with acts of selfishness, self interest and the blood of Maldivians wounded and murdered in crimes which were once alien to this nation.

The battle, to keep influential colonial powers at bay, now emerges with fuel from within the Maldives. Words of mockery, harassment and anger have replaced the laughter of the children, and the fond stories of the aged, once heard in our living rooms and Holhuashi (seafront sitting and recreational areas of the island) in every island. Jealousy seems to have paved its way into the national arena. Undisguised, self centred efforts to deter national development aimed to benefit people en masse are carried without hesitation.

Today we see politicians pursuing their own interests under the guise of citizens’ rights. Yet, the reality remains that supporting these politically motivated calls will neither pay our healthcare or electricity bills, nor will it help us obtain educational opportunities for our students who achieve academic excellence. We also need to recognise that time spent on answering these questions and combatting these efforts, divert time, energy and financial resources away from ports, hospitals, housing projects and other similar initiatives aimed towards the betterment of life.

Beloved Maldivians,
Maldivian Constitution was drafted and crafted on a Presidential System. This was a decision made by Maldivians via a referendum held in 2007. The very basis of a Presidential System is that a person is directly elected by the people to serve as the Head of State and Government during a specified presidential term, upon a presented Manifesto. That one single person remains as the Head of State and Government responsible for the whole nation.

However, accountability mechanisms are also an inherent feature of the Presidential system, such that government officials will be held answerable and accountable, should they breach their duty to conserve the interests of the State and its citizens. Such mechanisms are established to ensure the smooth functioning of the State and delivery of services to the people.

Another significant feature of the presidential system is that, the State and the Government will continue to function through the Head of State and Government, even without commanding the majority of the legislature.
Constitutional frameworks are designed in this manner to ensure that the interests of the State reign supreme. National security is not threatened and services provided to the people, continue without disruption. Disruption threatens the stability and security of the country, resulting in costly and unquantifiable loss of opportunities.

Beloved people,

Constitutional experts who have researched the Maldivian Constitutional and legal system, have opined that the system is designed for a deadlock. They have stated that it provides opportunities for the President to be presented to the public with one hand tied behind his back. The system is riddled with loopholes which allows enemies of the State to meddle in government and State affairs. The Maldivian Constitution has been found to be too complicated and costly for a country with such limited resources and man-power. The Constitutional framework, newly introduced in 2008 is too burdensome and complicated for a country, which cannot boast a lifestyle of democratic history. One of the basic tenets of democracy is for peoples’ affairs to be handled by elected public officials. The Maldives’ elections framework and that of its elected officials is the perfect example of the complexity of the Maldivian Constitutional frame work.

9 years have passed since the ratification of the Constitution, during which 7 national elections have been held. Based on the number of days allocated for elections in the legislation, almost 40% of that time has been spent on direct election activities. Every 466th person is a salaried public official elected at a National Election. Up until March 2017, the figure stood at 292.

If all the elected and salaried public officials are working in the best interests of the people, the question arises as to who benefits from safer streets and safer communities. Who would benefit when students are able to concentrate on their exams and the children and the elderly are able to sleep peacefully. Would the country as a whole not benefit if peace and stability prevailed? Should not the primary responsibility of the elected officials be to protect the interest of the people whom they are representing? Is their obligation not one of a trust?

Simultaneously, we should also pose the question of whether, elected public officials can abuse power granted by the Constitution and the laws, to halt the development projects and provision of services merely to further their own political motives and ambition? The question of whether this would be a legitimate use of their constitutional powers?

Beloved people,
As I have stated on many occasions, I took on the responsibility of governing this country to combat the challenges faced by our nation. Solving the age old problems, battled yet unsolved by previous administrations. Problems whose solutions will enable a better future for our children and their children.

Hence, my work

– to combat efforts to propagate religious beliefs other than Islam and to ensure that Maldives remains as a 100% Muslim nation.

– to prevent apostasy amongst the youth.

– to ensure safety of lives of the people and their property

– to combat terrorism, radicalism and extremism

– to fight against drug and related offences and to enhance the system of children and women’s protection

– to repay the government debt and stabilise the weakened economy

– to create more job opportunities for our youth

These were, are and will remain as my battle and war for this beloved nation of ours.

These issues were not born in the past 4 years. In fact, they are problems inherited from previous administrations. Nonetheless, the fact remains, that efforts to obstruct and halt the untiring work of this Government and its employees, can never amount to serving the interest of the State or its people.

Beloved Maldivians,

Despite the constant challenges, betrayals and disruptions I face, in implementing the above Agenda, I have remained un-relented and steadfast because I believe in the potential of our country. Because I have hopes and dreams for this nation. Because I have a certain faith in our people.

My goals are to:
– increase the income and sufficiency of Maldivians to ensure happiness and prosperity.

– Rehabilitate and reintegrate victims of drug abuse and crime, back into the society and provide them with job opportunities and accept their place in families and the society.

– divert funds spent on correctional and rehabilitation facilities towards housing, health and wages

– ensure that marginalised children with disabilities and learning difficulties are given an opportunity for a bright future

– make Velana International Airport and I.G.M.H. regionally acclaimed establishments.

– train our sports players and athletes to become invincible.

– build our professionals to be the absolute best in their fields.

Although we are comparatively small in population, size and resources, I believe that we as a nation have the capability and commitment to achieve these goals and attain excellence.

Fellow Maldivians, it is you, who have entrusted me with this mandate. I urge you to join me in this venture and earn the honour of contributing towards the prosperity of Maldivians. Let us seize this opportunity to make the glimmer of hope shining in our children’s eyes a reality. Let us join hands without prejudice, to deliver the Maldivian dream.

Glory of your nation can only be built upon the glorification of your service to the nation.

We triumph as a nation and we fall as people.

It is Almighty Allah and him alone that I seek help in carrying out the trust the people tasked me with! May Allah preserve our independence and sovereignty for eternity. May my beloved people be blessed with happiness and prosperity.

Maldives and Malaysia signs a MOU in the Field of Culture, Arts and Heritage

In conjunction with the auspicious occasion of the Independence Day of the Maldives, the Government of the Republic of Maldives and the Government of Malaysia signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Cooperation in the Field of Culture, Arts and Heritage.  On behalf of the Government of Maldives the MOU was signed by HE Mohamed Fahmy Hassan, the Ambassador of the Republic of Maldives to Malaysia and on behalf of the Government of Malaysia MOU was signed by YBhg. Datuk Hj. Ab. Ghaffar bin A. Tambi, the Secretary General of the Ministry of Tourism and Culture Malaysia.

The signing ceremony was held today at Malaysian Tourism Centre, MaTiC and was attended by senior officials from the Ministry of Tourism and Culture Malaysia and by Maldivian Embassy.

The Republic of Maldives and Malaysia apart from being two Islamic countries, displays great similarities in culture, arts and heritage. Hence, both countries are hopeful that with the signing of this MOU, it would further enhance the bilateral relations between the two countries through cooperation in the field of culture, arts and heritage as these are the pivotal areas that could foster and enhance the friendly relations between the people of the Maldives and Malaysia and strengthen the principles of mutual respect for sovereignty, reciprocity and mutual benefit. Such cultural cooperation provides opportunities for the people from both countries to learn about each other’s distinctive cultures and tradition.

New Ambassador of Maldives, Dr. Ali Naseer Mohamed, presents Credentials to President Donald Trump

The new Ambassador of Maldives to the United States of America, His Excellency Dr. Ali Naseer Mohamed, has presented his Letter of Credence to the President of the United States of America, His Excellency Mr. Donald Trump, during a ceremony that was held today at the White House.

The President of the Republic of Maldives, His Excellency Mr. Yameen Abdul Gayoom, appointed Dr. Mohamed as the new Ambassador of Maldives to the United States of America on 9 July 2017. Prior to his appointment as the Ambassador of Maldives to the United States, Ambassador Mohamed was the Foreign Secretary of the Maldives, a position he held from November 2013 to July 2017.

Presidential decree establishes Commission on State Assets Recovery

President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom has today, by a Presidential Decree, established the Commission on State Assets Recovery. The decision was made following deliberations at the Cabinet meeting held on Sunday, 16th July 2017.

At the Cabinet meeting, members highlighted that recovery efforts of lost State assets were not being undertaken optimally by the respective institutions.

The main purpose of establishing the Commission on State Assets Recovery is to analyse efforts taken by the institutions to recover State assets highlighted in reports published by the Office of the Auditor General and the Anti-Corruption Commission. The President has granted full authority to the commission to independently carry out its duties, and take action accordingly.

The Commission on State Assets Recovery will be chaired by Minister of Home Affairs Hon. Azleen Ahmed. Other members of the commission are as follows:

– Uz. Mohamed Mujthaz
– Ms. Khadeeja Hussain
– Dr. Ibrahim Mahfooz
– Uz. Mohamed Saleem

President congratulates India’s new President-Elect

President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom has sent a congratulatory message to the President-elect of India, His Excellency Ram Nath Kovind.

The President’s message reads as follows:

“On behalf of the Government and the people of the Maldives, and on my own behalf, I have the honour to extend our warm congratulations and sincere good wishes on Your Excellency’s successful election as the President of the Republic of India.”

“I am ever more confident that under your able leadership, India will achieve greater heights of progress and prosperity. While reflecting on the close friendly relations that exist between the Maldives and India, I look forward to working closely with Your Excellency on matters of mutual benefit for both our countries and exploring further avenues of collaboration between the Maldives and India. It is my utmost belief that the close cooperation that exist between our two countries and its people will flourish during your term of office.”

“Please accept, Excellency, my personal best wishes for your good health and well-being, and the assurances of my highest consideration.”