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Will try to disburse all the fishermen’s payments before Ramadan: President

Addressing the concerns of fishermen in R. Dhuvaafaru, the President stated that the government is making efforts to settle all due payments of fishermen before the month of Ramadan. He highlighted that this was not a promise, but a commitment to try.

Aishath Shuba Solih
04 March 2024, MVT 12:07
Rare larger marlin
Aishath Shuba Solih
04 March 2024, MVT 12:07

President Dr Mohamed Muizzu has stated that efforts are underway to try to disburse all due payments of the fishermen before the month of Ramadan.

The President had learned that the concern of the many fishermen in Raa Atoll Dhuvaafaru was the delay in payment after weighing and purchasing their catch amid his visit to the island yesterday. A fishermen native to Dhuvaafaru had shared with Mihaaru News that it has been over two and a half months since their last payment after weighing fish.

Addressing the residential community of the island, the President assured that the fishing industry is an industry he wishes to sustainably expand and that the government has been implementing many efforts to achieve this. He had further reiterated that over MVR 600 million has been distributed to the fishermen thus far during this administration.

Remarking that a payment of MVR 230 million owed to the fishermen remained unsettled when this administration assumed office, he affirmed that this payment has also been disbursed. He had remarked the settlement of an additional MVR 400 million payment and lamented that there still remains unsettles dues.

“We are currently observing any type of financial mechanism by the time Ramadan approaches. The government is working together with the Fisheries Ministry and a company to ensure all the unsettled payments of the fishermen are disbursed before the month of Ramadan,” said the President.

“This is not a promise. I am assuring that efforts will be made.”

The president had further stated that the provision of payments to fishermen within 48 hours of weighing fish is a pledge of this administration and affirmed that following the settlement of all due payments of the fishermen, efforts will be redirected to fulfilling this vow.

A number of fishermen had gathered in Gaaf Alifu atoll Kooddoo on the 18th of last month to protest against the non-settlement of payments due from MIFCO after weighing and purchasing their catch over several months. The demonstration caused a three-day halt in the operations of Kooddoo Fisheries Complex, located in the island which resumed operations following deliberations between the fishermen, MIFCO and Fisheries Ministry.

The deliberation had assured the settlement of one third of the total payment owed to fishermen within the month, which was, as assured disbursed on the 26th of last month.