The Ministry of Gender, Family and Social Services has been shifted to the newly developed government office complex in Hulhumalé.
This is also the first government body to be shifted to the new building bearing the name of the former Minister of Construction, the late Umar Zahir. The office is located on the second floor of the new complex.
Apart from the Gender Ministry, the Ministry of Transport and Civil Aviation and the Ministry of Higher Education will be shifted to the building in the coming months.
A total of 99 employees from the ministry who were temporarily working at Male’ SeaTraks building have been relocated to the new establishment while the ministry’s Child and Family Protection unit currently located at Biloorijehige in Galolhu ward will be moved within two to three months. The unit has a total of 68 employees.
The employees of the ministry have been delighted with getting a more spacious office, said Minister of Gender Aishath Mohamed Didi while speaking with Mihaaru News.
Since the establishment of the Gender Ministry in 1993 under the then Maldives President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom’s youth and sports portfolio, the ministry has been operating without a separate office and in different buildings at different times.
“This is the first time we are getting a designated space for the ministry,” the minister said. “This is a very delightful space”.
She also said the ministry faced delays in acquiring its own office due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The ministry first operated at the Umar Shopping Arcade, and was shifted to Fen Building in 2006. The ministry was later dismissed with its operations brought under the mandate of the Ministry of Health. The ministry’s newly found establishment is the seventh venue since its formation.
Many government offices had previously operated in privately owned buildings which were costly. The state contracted a Chinese developer for a multi-story office complex to reduce government expenses on rent for its offices.