President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih, on Wednesday, stressed that education remained a key government priority.
He made the statement while addressing a function held to mark the golden jubilee anniversary of Rinbudhoo School, in Dhaalu Atoll. The president is currently on a two-day trip to Rinbudhoo Island.
In his speech, President Solih declared that the state’s education budget attested to the importance accorded to the education sector. He noted that the administration provided numerous higher education opportunities over the past year.
Emphasising the role of holistic education, President Solih stated that the administration’s education policy was intended to create a responsible generation of productive, skilled and innovative citizens.
He also expressed the necessity of strengthening the education system in order to build a development focused community with the mind and skill set to tackle future economic and developmental challenges.
Referring to the relocation of several Rinbudhoo residents to Thulusdhoo, Kaafu Atoll following the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami, President Solih guaranteed that the administration would solve the island's housing problems via housing schemes. The president commended Rinbudhoo citizens for the resilience they demonstrated in the face of tragedy, including preventing the closure of the school.
During his address, President Solih also noted the status of development projects scheduled for the island. He stated that an electricity service upgrading project would commence within the year, while a water and sewerage network project was currently in the tendering process.
Additionally, the president confirmed that efforts to address coastal erosion in Rinbudhoo were underway.
Highlighting the importance of preserving Maldivian culture and traditions, President Solih stated that Rinbudhoo residents have possessed reputations as master goldsmiths for generations.
During his visit, President Solih also inaugurated 'Cultural Road', which was conceived with assistance from the Maldivian Artists Community (MAC) as a strategy for promoting local tourism. The project also serves to showcase local artistic talent, particularly works based on Maldivian heritage and folklore.
At the inauguration, the president complimented local artists and the island for their efforts to revive traditional arts and craftsmanship.
Additionally, President Solih inaugurated Rinbudhoo's Futsal Field and the ‘Mariyam-maa’ Programme, a campaign centred on improving the wellness of infants and pregnant woman.
'Mariyam-Maa' will include awareness programmes as well as financial aid and other assistance required by pregnant women.
Furthermore, the President also met with the Island Council and representatives from Rinbudhoo's major institutions to discuss the issues, concerns or requests the residents had for the administration.