Inmates have begun construction work at the Male Ring Road and the Male-Hulhule Bridge in the capital Male.
This is the first time inmates are working at a site in the capital.
About 20 convicts in bright orange sweatshirts and dark blue track pants were seen near the Male sports complex on the outermost Boduthakurufaanu Magu early on Sunday. Maldives Correction Services’ officers were also there to supervise them.
Inmates are allowed to work on contract basis on select projects, and they are compensated for their work. The Correction Corporative Society oversees the inmates’ work.
As such, some inmates have been contracted to do work for the State Electric Company Limited (STELCO), and work at the company’s sites.
In relation to convicts working in public areas, the Commissioner of Prisons Ahmed Shian had previously assured that only inmates with “good behaviour” are allowed to work, and said that they are not a threat to the public.
The Male-Hulhule Bridge is one of the most ambitious infrastructural projects undertaken by the current administration. It is estimated to cost USD 200 million, out of which USD 116 million was provided as free aid and USD 72 million as a loan by China. The Maldivian government is bearing USD 12 million of the project cost.