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Parliament approves President Solih's cabinet

05 December 2018, MVT 11:13
President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih's cabinet members. PHOTO: HUSSAIN WAHEED / MIHAARU
05 December 2018, MVT 11:13

The Parliament, on Tuesday, has given the vote of approval for the 20-member cabinet appointed by President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih.

While more than half of the cabinet was approved with 70 out of 72 total votes, five ministers were unanimously approved.

Cabinet members approved by a unanimous vote

Minister of Fisheries, Marine Resource and Agriculture Zaha Waheed

Minister of Housing and Urban Development Aminath Athifa

Minister of Youth, Sports and Community Empowerment Ahmed Mahloof

Minister of Environment. Dr Hussain Rasheed Hassan

Attorney General. Ibrahim Riff’ath

Cabinet members approved by a 70 votes

Minister of Foreign Affairs Abdulla Shahid

Minister of Defence and National Security Mariya Ahmed Didi

Minister of Finance and Treasury Ibrahim Ameer

Minister of National Planning and Infrastructure Mohamed Aslam

Minister of Higher Education Dr Ibrahim Hassan

Minister of Health Abdulla Ameen

Minister of Communication Science and Technology Mohamed Maleeh Jameel

Minister of Education Dr. Aishath Ali

Minister of Transport Aishath Nahula

The cabinet member who garnered the least votes was Minister of Gender, Family and Social Services Sidhatha Shareef. While 67 Parliamentarians voted in favour, 2 members voted against her appointment.

The positions of Minister of Heritage Yumna Maumoon and Minister of Home Affairs Imran Abdulla were secured by 68 votes. Minister of Tourism Ali Waheed received 69 votes in his favour.

Both Fayyaz Ismail Minister of Economic Development Fayyaz Ismail and Minister of Islamic Affairs Dr. Ahmed Zahir attained 71 votes of approval, however the latter also received one negative vote.

All parliamentarians who debated on the report presented by the Parliament’s Accountability Committee agreed that it was important to grant approval to the cabinet and ensure that ministers diligently carried out their duties. They also stressed that the ministers must be held accountable for any impotency in this regard.

Vilufushi MP Riyaz Rasheed who is also the head of Parliament’s Accountability Committee asserted that the ministers were capable and stated that they should fulfil their duties within the bounds of the law.

Additionally, Thinadhoo North MP Saudulla Hilmy and Kulhudhufushi MP Abdul Ghafoor Moosa emphasized that the parliament would not hesitate to hold cabinet ministers responsible for any corrupt or illicit activities

While the committee in charge of investigating the cabinet also granted approval, the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) is currently investigating issues related to two cabinet members. The two ministers in question are Tourism Minister Ali Waheed and Housing Minister Aminath Athifa.

The cabinet was formed according to proportions agreed between president Solih and the coalition leaders prior to the presidential election. Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) accounts for 40 percent of the cabinet, Jumhooree Party (JP) accounts for 25 percent while Adhaalath Party accounts for 15 percent. The Maumoon Reform Movement (MRM) constitutes 20 percent of the cabinet

The 19-member cabinet sworn in on November 17 is the largest in Maldivian history, and features the highest proportion of female ministers thus far, several ministers have come under harsh criticism from the public

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