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Maldives News Bulletin, 17-11-2008
Issue No: 1177

President Gayoom confers “Order of Izzuddin” to eleven senior officials

9th Nov: President Gayoom has today, conferred the “Order of Izzuddin” to eleven senior officials. The “Order of Izzuddin” was presented to the 11 officials, in accordance with Article 115 (r), in recognition of their courage and their invaluable contributions to advancement of the country.

The President conferred the “Order of Izzuddin” to the following persons:

1.    Uz. Fathulla Jameel, Senior Minister

2.    Dr. Mohamed Zahir Hussain, Senior Minister

3.    Uz. Abdulla Hameed, Senior Minister

4.    Mr. Ali Umar Maniku, Special Advisor to the President

5.    Mr. Umar Zahir, Senior Minister

6.    Mr. Abdulla Jameel. State Dignitary

7.    Mr. Ilyas Ibrahim, Minister of Health

8.    Mr. Ismail Shafeeu, Minister of Defence and National Security

9.    Mr. Ahmed Zahir, former Speaker of the People’s Majlis

10.  Mr. Abdulla Kamaaludheen, Minister of Home Affairs

11.  Sh. Mohamed Rasheed Ibrahim, Special Advisor to the President

 

President Gayoom thanks the people for the love, respect and honour that he recieved throughout the past 30 years

10th Nov: President Gayoom has thanked the people for the love, respect and honour that he received from them, throughout the past 30 years and said that he wished to remain here in the Maldives, on this land of his birth, under the shade of our national flag. He made this statement in his farewell address to the nation which was simulcast this afternoon by Television Maldives, Voice of Maldives, and all the radio stations and TV channels in the country.

In his address, the President also said the he could not have completed six consecutive presidential terms of office if not for the sincere support and assistance of many dedicated people. In this regard, he thanked every single dignitary who served as ministers at various periods of his presidency and thanked all other dignitaries and senior Government officials during the past 30 years.

Noting that many of those who supported him during the recent presidential election were still bitterly disappointed, President Gayoom said that their sentiments were clearly etched on their faces when they came to bid farewell to him over the past couple of days.

Stressing that his aim had always been to increase the country’s potential for growth and development, the President said that he tried his utmost to fulfil the aspirations of the people. He also said that he sincerely hoped that the people would accept and acknowledge this fact.

“Every decision that I had made as President, every document that I has signed as President, every piece of legislation that I had ratified as President and every piece of legislation that I had ratified as President and every policy that I had implemented as President, was done with unwavering objective of sustainably building our beloved nation” said the President.

Elaborating on the many aspirations he had for the future of the Maldives, President Gayoom said that he hoped “the Maldives to adhere vehemently to the tenets and principles of the Islamic faith, the Maldives to remain forever as a 100% Muslim country, to steadfastly protect the independence and sovereignty of our great nation [and] our families to remain tightly bonded by kinship and love”.

In concluding his address, President Gayoom said that he was leaving office as President with much greater hopes and aspirations than when he first assumed office many years back. He also said that he sincerely believed that the greatest gift was that of his Maldivian identity, his Maldivian roots and his Maldivian citizenship. Further, President Gayoom reiterated his sincere congratulations to President-elect, Mr. Mohamed Nasheed, and to all members of his government. He also expressed his wishes for the good health and wellbeing for the people of the Maldives.

 

Mr. Mohamed Nasheed sworn in as President and Dr. Mohamed Waheed Hassan Maniku sworn is as Vice-President

11th Nov: Mr. Mohamed Nasheed has been sworn in as the 4th President of the Republic of Maldives. The President took his oath of office at the Special Assembly held at Dharubaaruge at 10.00 this morning. The oath of office was administered by the Chief Justice, Uz. Abdulla Saeed.

After the President was sworn-in, he was greeted with a 21-gun salute, which was followed by the playing of the National Anthem. The President signed the oath thereafter. The Chief Justice, Uz. Abdulla Saeed and the Speaker of the People’s Majlis, Mr. Mohamed Shihab also signed the oath.

Dr. Mohamed Waheed Hassan Maniku was also sworn in as the Vice-President of the Maldives at the Assembly. The oath of office was administered by the Chief Justice, Uz. Abdulla Saeed. The Vice President signed the oath thereafter. The Chief Justice, Uz. Abdulla Saeed and the Speaker of the People’s Majlis, Mr. Mohamed Shihab also signed the oath.

 

President Nasheed says that today we mark the beginning of a democratic system of governance based within the bounds of the Constitution and good Islamic principles

11th Nov: President Mohamed Nasheed has said that today we marked the beginning of a democratic system of governance based within the bounds of the Constitution and good Islamic principle. The President made this statement in his address to the nation after taking oath of Office. He also said that one of his major responsibilities would be to establish a people’s governance and foster the culture of popular government.

The President also said that today, our republic was decorated with the new hues that marked the historic moment in time, the age that we live in, and the circumstances of the nation. He also said that people have now realised that the path to development was through good governance and that this had now been secured through the hard work and the sacrifice of many people.

Highlighting on his electoral pledges, President Nasheed said that “the people need to be freed from being confined to their islands due to lack of transport, their cost of living needs to be brought down, their worries for adequate shelter needs alleviation, having to seek sponsorship for medical treatment must stop, and the entry of drugs into the country should be barred”.

 

The President meets the President of Sri Lanka and the Vice-President of India

11th Nov: President Mohamed Nasheed, today, met with the Sri Lankan President, Mahinda Rajapaksa and the Vice-President of India Mr. Mohammad Hamid Ansari. The two separate meetings were held at the President’s Office this afternoon.

Speaking at the meeting, President Nasheed expressed his appreciation that President Rajapaksa had visited the Maldives to participate in his oath taking ceremony. He also said he hoped that the close bilateral relations that had existed between the Maldives and Sri Lanka would continue to strengthen in the years ahead. Further, the President said that the democratic system that the people of Maldives were now part of was a historic one and also a peaceful illustration by the people.

President Rajapaksa congratulated President Mohamed Nasheed for his assumption of Office. Expressing his assurance that the close relations that had existed between the two countries would further strengthen in the years ahead, President Rajapaksa said that he would provide his assistance in every possible way.  He also said that he was happy that the Maldives had successfully established a modern democratic system.

President Nasheed also today, met with the Indian Vice- President Mr. Mohammad Hamid Ansari. Speaking at the meeting President Nasheed expressed his appreciation that President Rajapaksa had visited the Maldives to participate in his oath taking ceremony. Noting that the Maldives and India had always had a very cordial relationship, the President said he hoped that this relationship could be further strengthened.

Vice-President Ansari said that it had been a pleasure for him to have participated in the oath taking ceremony of President Nasheed. He also congratulated President Nasheed for the successful establishment of a modern democratic system in the Maldives.

 

The President appoints Ministers to his Cabinet

12th Nov: The President has appointed Ministers to his Government. President Nasheed presented their Letters of Appointment at a ceremony held tonight at the President’s Office. Before the presentation of the Letters of Appointment, the Ministers took their oath of Office. The newly appointed Ministers are; Minister of Home Affairs, Mr. Gasim Ibrahim, Minister of Finance and Treasury, Mr. Ali Hashim, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Ahmed Shaheed, Minister of Health and Family, Dr. Aminath Jameel, Minster of Defence and National Security, Mr. Ameen Faisal, Minister of Education, Dr. Musthafa Luthfy, Attorney General, Uza. Fathimath Dhiyana Saeed, Minister of Economic Development, Mr. Mohamed Rasheed, Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Dr. Ahmed Ali Sawad, Minister of Human Resource, Youth and Sports, Uz. Hassan Latheef, Minister of Housing, Transport and Environment, Mr. Mohamed Aslam, Minster of Fisheries and Agriculture, Dr. Ibrahim Didi, Minster of Civil Aviation and Communication, Dr. Mohamed Jameel Ahmed and Minister of Islamic Affairs, Dr. Abdul Majeed Abdul Bari.

Speaking at the ceremony, President Nasheed said that compilation of the Cabinet was carried out in the full spirit of the new Constitution. He further noted that the People’s Majlis has the power to remove from Office, those Ministers who do not fully discharge the responsibilities assigned to them.

 

New govt to provide pension for elderly

12th Nov:  The new President of Maldives Mohamed Nasheed (Anni) has stated that he make arrangements to provide a pension in the range of Rf 2000 to every Maldivian above 65 years of age. He made the statement speaking at a media briefing held at Hilaaleege on Monday.

President Nasheed expressed that the arrangement is intended to ease the difficulties the elders face in coping with increased medical costs.

“One of the main pledges we have made with regard to health care service, is that my government will establish a system where the citizens will not have to beg for medications prescribed by the doctor, we will establish a system where the citizens will not have without receiving proper medical care due lack of money, there is something which I would like share with you regarding our health care pledge, I am very happy to say , by the will of Almighty, effective from 1January 2009, every Maldivian citizen above 65 years of age, whether male or female , will be provided with a pension of approximately Rf 2000. This was a pledge we made, and we will by will of God, commence fulfilling that promise on 1 January” said President Nasheed who was inaugurated yesterday morning as Maldives 4 th President.

Dr. Aiminath Jameel who is going to assume the new health minister portfolio also spoke at the media briefing. Briefing the media Aiminath Jameel assured that all of MDP pledges on health care is achievable and will be fulfilled. She highlighted that various plans has been formulated to prevent the culture of ‘begging to receive health care’. In this regard she noted a health insurance scheme is to be launched on 1 January 2009 and that the scheme will be introduced in phases and that the first to benefit from the scheme will the elderly, i.e. those above 65 years of age.

“We have given priority to health insurance scheme in order to provide basic services to the citizens, the scheme will be introduced in stages, we have promised a period between 1 to 3 years to fully introduce the scheme, we may be able to fully introduce the scheme a bit earlier but I am confident that the scheme will not suffer set backs. We have to accept the reality that due to our current economic status we shall not be able to introduce the scheme all at once, in this regard priority is given to the elderly, effective from 1 January 2009, those above 65 years can participate in the scheme” said Aiminath Jameel.

She also talked about various other plans to improve the quality of health services provided in the country. In this regard, she revealed plans to introduce programs to upgrade health care services in atolls so that citizens will not have come to Male’ every time they are faced with a serious ailment.

 

CSC reshuffles Permanent Secretaries of govt ministries

13th Nov:  Civil Service Commission (CSC) has revealed that changes have been brought to Permanent Secretaries of various government ministries due to changes in government administrative structure.

According to Civil Service Commission the changes were necessary to accommodate the changes to the administrative structure of the government and that Permanent Secretaries were appointed to 14 ministries currently operating in the present structure.
In this regard, Ismail Shafeeg and Rasheeda Ali has been appointed as Permanent Secretaries to Ministry of Finance and Treasury; Fathimath Reeni Abdul Sattar as Permanent Secretary of Ministry of Defence, Ahmed Shareef Adam and Marium Waheedha as permanent Secretary of Ministry of Home Affairs, Dr. Amaal Ali as the Permanent Secretary of Education Ministry, Mohamed Asif as Permanent Secretary of Attorney General, Mohamed Naseer as the Permanent Secretary of Foreign Ministry , Yousuf Riza as the Permanent Secretary of Ministry of Trade and Economic Development, Ahmed Salih and Noora Ali as Permanent Secretaries of Tourism Ministry, Mohamed Saleem and Agwad Ali as the Permanent Secretaries of Ministry of Human Resources, Youth and Sports, Mohamed Saleem and Abdulla Naushad as the Permanent Secretaries of Ministry of Housing Transport and Environment , Dr. Abdulla Naseer as the Permanent Secretary of Ministry of Fisheries and Agriculture, and Mohamed Latheef was appointed as Permanent Secretary of Civil Aviation and Communication.

In addition, Mohamed Didi was appointed as Permanent Secretary of Ministry of Islamic Affiars, and Dr. Sheena Moosa and Mazeena Jameel were appointed as Permanent Secretaries of Ministry of Health and Family.

According to Civil Service Commission, the 21 Permanent Secretaries who used to serve in 21 ministries are now accommodated in 14 ministries currently forming the administrative structure.

 

Maldives Participates in INTRADE Malaysia 2008

14th Nov: High Commission of Maldives in Malaysia, in collaboration with the Ministry of Economic Development and the Maldives Industrial Fisheries Company Ltd (MIFCO), has participated in the International Trade Malaysia 2008 (INTRADE Malaysia 2008) Exhibition organized by Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE) from 13th to 16th November 2008, according to foreign ministry sources.

INTRADE Malaysia 2008, the largest trade event held annually in Malaysia, features an international trade fair showcasing a wide range of products and services from around the world and attracts a number of Malaysian businesses and over 800 overseas buyer missions seeking new sourcing prospects.

The objectives of Maldives’ participation at the event are to introduce the Maldives, its economy and its products such as fisheries products of MIFCO to Malaysian and ASEAN region and to promote trade and tourism of Maldives in the region.

Maldives imports approximately USD 100 million worth of goods from Malaysia, currently its fourth largest trading partner, while exports to Malaysia are limited to a few varieties of marine products.

 

Zaki appointed as Special Envoy to President

14th President Mohamed Nasheed (Anni) has appointed Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) Acting President as Special Envoy to the President and Dr. Hassan Saeed as Advisor to the President at a special ceremony held at President’s Office yesterday.

Hassan Saeed of H. Shady Palm appointed as the Advisor to the President contested the first round of presidential elections as an independent candidate and achieved third position with 29,633 votes (16.78%). Hassan was also the first opposition candidate who failed in the first round of the presidential elections to back Mohamed Nasheed (Anni) for the runoff election.

Ibarhim Hussain Zaki of H.Hulhugeli appointed as the Special Envoy of the President is also the Vice President of Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) as well as the party’s Acting President. In addition to serving in various cabinet positions in the previous government Zaki also served as a former SAARC Secretary General.

An associate of Dr. Hassan Saeed has revealed that Dr. Hassan will compete in the next presidential election and is in the process of forming a political party. President Nasheed has also appointed Dr. Ahmed Shaheed and Dr. Jameel both close associates of Dr. Hassan to the cabinet.

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