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15 buildings in Malé need to be demolished, Mayor cites insufficient budget

About 15 buildings need to be demolished for public safety in Malé City but authorities have no budget to carry out the demolishing.

Ameera Osmanagic
22 May 2024, MVT 19:33
Old buildings in ruins in Malé City -- Photo: Fayaz Moosa | Mihaaru
Ameera Osmanagic
22 May 2024, MVT 19:33

About 15 buildings in Malé City have been identified to be in ruins and in need of demolition, however the city council has no budget to do so, said Mayor Adam Azim today.

While people passing by and vehicles parked in the vicinity of these buildings have faced damage caused by falling objects such as bricks and parts of the walls, residents of neighbouring buildings have lodged complaints with the authorities, however, to no avail.

Speaking on the topic, Mayor Azim said that demolishing such buildings is the responsibility of the building owners, but that if they fail to do so and the public is inconvenienced as a result, then the responsibility shifts to the State.

"Demolishing the building is a responsibility of the owners. According to the law, [these] things need to be done by the house owners. If not done [by the owners] then it has to be done by us. And we have to forward the expense bills to the house owners. However we do not have the budget for it. Even the State budget has no funds allocated for this," said Mayor Azim.

"The council also has no money to do all that [demolish and discard]. So [I] talked with Public Works as well. They do not have the funds for it either," he went on to say.

However, he highlighted that some of the 15 buildings that need to be demolished are State-owned, while others are privately owned by various individuals. However, even Waste Management Corporation Limited (WAMCO) doesn't have the space to store all the discarded waste, he explained.

"Right now [in Malé] there are many places like this [that need to be demolished]. [We] have identified all such places. A huge cost will be incurred to dispose of all the waste. For example, let's see, disposing one big lorry of waste is MVR 27,000 (USD 1,752). When we recently looked into demolishing one building, all the costs run up to about MVR 3 million," Azim said. "The other thing is WAMCO also needs to have the capacity. There is no space to keep those things [discards]."

Azim also pointed out that such buildings have also been identified from Villimalé, and that discussions are underway to try and see if a budget can be arranged for the demolitions. The last such meeting was held just last week, he said.

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