Commissioner of Police (CP) Mohamed Hameed announced on Thursday that the Police Training Academy being built in Addu with the Indian government's free aid will be inaugurated on Independence Day next year.
Speaking to the media at the sidelines of the official inaugural ceremony of Addu Neighbourhood Police, CP Hameed stated that the academy can start operations by July 26, 2020, considering the speed of progress.
The training school is being built near the Hithadhoo Port Ltd (HPL)'s office in front of Hithadhoo's regional harbour. The construction for this training school began in 2017 and included land reclamation and placing revetments.
Indian government is fully funding the academy which is being built as a replacement for the training school that was burned down by Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) protestors following former President Mohamed Nasheed's resignation.
Police formerly revealed that the project, announced by the then-Police Commissioner Hussain Waheed on April 6, 2014, during the ceremony held to celebrate Maldives Police Service's 81st Anniversary, is worth USD 18 million.
The project was contracted to India's Sri Avantika Contractors Ltd.
According to Police, the training academy will be complete with various facilities including quality accommodation blocks, clinics, PT grounds, a helipad and other resources.
"In the future, major Police training and other activities will be held at the academy. Starting operations at the facility will bring about modern changes and notable progress to Police training and services", Hameed said.
According to the Commissioner, despite the criticism aimed at the government for building a Police academy across a wide area, the academy will be directly under the Maldives Police Service.
Some accuse that the academy is being built to increase India's influence in Addu. However, CP Hameed assured that there was no such intention behind the project.
"This project is taking place due to the increasing need for a training academy. It will be directly owned by Maldivian Police. Although there are many rumours about the place, there is no cause for concern", Hameed assured.
He stated that although the academy was for Police, all of Addu will benefit from its facilities adding that other institutions in the law enforcement community such as Maldives Customs and Maldives Immigration can hold training sessions there.