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Parliament orders ACC to provide 'complete' information on flat lists

Mariyath Mohamed
12 February 2024, MVT 17:22
View of the entrance to Maldives Parliament, People's Majlis.
Mariyath Mohamed
12 February 2024, MVT 17:22

Parliament's Committee on Independent Institutions has said that the Anti Corruption Commission has provided incomplete and senseless information to them in response to their request for documents.

The committee had asked the ACC to provide the lists and documentation regarding the findings of their investigation into the previous government's Gedhoruveriya housing scheme, where the commission declared 60 percent of those on the recipient list had been wrongly awarded flats.

Today, the parliament committee has passed an order that the ACC must provide them documentation before 14:00 hrs tomorrow which clearly show:

- Names of recipients/applicants,

-Address of recipients/applicants,

-Identity card numbers of recipients/applicants,

- whether disqualified or not, with reasons elaborated,

as well as any other pertinent information related to the matter.

ACC initiated its investigation into the allocation of flats by the previous government after it received upwards of 300 complaints regarding the matter. The commission's investigation looked into 4,048 forms and found that 59.6 percent of these were allocated flats despite having various issues with the applications which, in fact, deemed them ineligible.

The ACC has been previously summoned to the Independent Institutions Committee regarding this investigation and asked for the documentation of their investigation.

However, Committee Chair Rozaina Adam said today that the documents ACC had provided them earlier was a list of applicants drafted on the information they received through their investigation. She said that the list included names of recipients who did not have any issues with their applications and were eligible for flats even as things stand. She said that the document just had a list of numbers, deeming it impossible for anyone to make sense of what it may mean.

"I do not accept that these [documents] actually give us any information that we asked for," Rozaina said.

Baarah MP Ahmed Abdulla alleged that ACC had simply forwarded them an entirely useless document. He accused the ACC of attempting to act beyond its legal powers, claiming that the commission has no right to deprive many recipients of their government granted flats.

Ahmed Abdulla said that the ACC must reveal on what grounds it ruled that certain applicants are ineligible, and why their forms are to be rejected.

"I wish for this committee to look into the flat issue and for this committee to clearly know why ACC decided they do not meet the criteria," he said.

Henveiru Central MP Ali Azim said that if flats have indeed been allocated wrongfully, it is then imperative that the ACC looks into the matter. He further said that as the issue involves the rights of many, it must be expedited.

Azim accused the ACC of acting in spite when asked to send the entire list. He said that the list provided did not even differentiate between those who are eligible and those who are not.

"When we asked them to send the entire list, they have responded in an uncouth manner. They have sent a list as in if acting in spite. [From this list] we are not able to say who it is, where they are from, even whether they are male or female," Azim said.

Thereby, the committee voted on the matter today and unanimously decided to order the ACC to submit the documents in their entirety before 14:00 hrs on Tuesday.

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