The Edition


Maldives appoints ex-top diplomat as new state health minister

Fathmath Shaahunaz
05 January 2017, MVT 15:07
A file photo shows foreign minister Dhunya Maumoon at a press conference. MIHAARU PHOTO
Fathmath Shaahunaz
05 January 2017, MVT 15:07

The Maldives government has appointed Dhunya Maumoon as the new State Minister of Health.

Muaz Ali, the spokesperson of the President’s Office, confirmed the appointment on Thursday.

The daughter of Former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, Dhunya Maumoon had previously served as the Minister of Foreign Affairs until she resigned from office on July 5 last year over difference of opinion with the current government.

In a statement, she had stated then that the reason for her resignation was the government’s decision to implement capital punishment in the Maldives. She had declared that the death penalty had been approved at a time when questions had been raised over the integrity of the nation’s judiciary, and that the state must recognise the public’s concerns on the matter.

Following her resignation, Dhunya has been critical of certain policies of the government. However, it is noteworthy that her condemnation is relatively less unforgiving than that of her siblings, all of whom sans Ghassan Maumoon, are publicly rooting for their father, Former President Maumoon, in the political feud between him and his half-brother, the incumbent President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom which had subsequently split the ruling Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) into two factions.

In response to Dhunya’s new appointment as the State Health Minister, her sister Yumna Maumoon stated in a tweet that the decision had been Dhunya’s own. She added that she herself will remain steadfast by Former President Maumoon’s side.