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News / MDP

Emergency motion urging issuance of social housing flats, land plots

Mohamed Rehan
28 November 2023, MVT 13:43
MP Meekail Naseem.
Mohamed Rehan
28 November 2023, MVT 13:43

An emergency motion has been submitted to the parliament urging prompt issuance of social housing flats and land plots initiated during the previous government led by former President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih.

South-Galolhu MP Mikhail Naseem submitted the motion, which was accepted to the legislative chambers with 29 votes while subsequent debates on the bill ensued.

MP Mikhail argued the current government has been issuing contradicting information regarding the issuance of flats and land plots. The MP further highlighted the pledge of incumbent President Dr. Mohamed Muizzu regarding the social housing scheme.

During his presidential campaigning, President Muizzu promised he would not impede the proceedings of the housing flats and land plots.

The South-Galolhu MP argued several constituents voted for him relying on this promise. However, the MP noted that the narrative of the current administration has shifted since President Muizzu took oath of office.

According to Mikhail, the current Minister of Housing Dr. Ali Haidar earlier said some land plots cannot be issued and questioned about the legitimacy of some registries.

The MP also pointed out the minister's warning where he said the resubmission of application forms may be required for the housing flats, while the location of some land plots may need to be changed.

Mikhail highlighted that the current administration did not allocate expenditure for projects in the following year's budget, to provide basic facilities and services to the new land plots.

The MP questioned the intentions of the current government for its decision to prioritize the reclamation of Fushidhiggaru lagoon, for which funds have been allocated in the budget for 2024.

"Instead of keeping the public in confusion, we demand expediting all efforts to allocate the land plots and housing flats to the recipients, and announce the government's stand on the matter as well," Mikhail said.

The previous government earlier allocated plots from Hulhumale', Gulhifalhu, and Giraavaru lagoon. Additionally, the Solih administration publicized the list of recipients eligible for the 4,000 housing units developed in Hulhumale' by Fahi-Dhiriulhun Corporation (FDC).

The social housing proceedings, however, were intercepted by Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) around the final days of the previous government.

South-Henveiru MP Hussain Shaheem-- Photo: Mihaaru

Meanwhile, Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) member of parliament Hussain Shaheem criticized the previous government over the same social housing initiative.

In his argument, Shaheem scrutinized the awarding policy used by the previous regime. The South-Henveiru MP noted that the points for recipients were not allocated fairly.

"What I cannot accept is the unfair policy in awarding. I do not accept the decision to award units from the 4,000 flats to those who falsified their information on the application form," the MP said.

"Whether it was by the minister or the state minister, the matter was not handled property even if it was by the government led by the party to which I belong to," Hussain added.

He said that the public was aware of the unfair awarding policy for the social housing scheme, which the MP said he did not expect from MDP.

"When one out of two individuals from the same constituency, neighbors to each other, is held eligible with the other disqualified, I don't have to point out to the unfair manner in which the points have been allocated. The applicants are even aware that others, without children, had been held eligible when they themselves were disqualified. People who have been living in their home islands have been awarded with flats as well," Hussain added.

The MP further highlighted that the previous government experienced time shortage in assessing the authenticity of the information provided by the applicants. However, the MP claimed that the previous administration's excuse of time shortage cannot be accepted since the Solih-led government had five years to address the housing issue.

A total of 13,000 individuals are eligible for the social housing scheme launched during the previous government. From the total eligible applicants, the government awarded the first 4,000 housing units to the recipients with the highest points.

Applicants, opting for three-bedroom units had to score 76 or more to be eligible for the units, while applicants, choosing two-bedroom units had to score 73 points or more. At the time, the previous government said that the 4000 flats would be ready for occupancy by the end of 2024.