Parliamentary committee probes handover of IGMH, ministry building

Parliament Finance Committee meeting


Parliament Finance Committee meeting. PHOTO:Hussain Waheed/Mihaaru

The parliamentary finance committee on Wednesday decided to look into how the government had awarded the project to develop a 25 storey building of state run Indira Gandhi Memorial Hospital (IGMH) and Ministry of Finance and Treasury’s new building, to probe if there had been any violations in the awarding process.

The case was filed by North Kulhudhufushi MP Abdul Ghafoor Moosa. Henceforth, the authorities and institutions involved have sent all the documents related to the project to the committee. However, members of the committee have sought for more time to review all the documents.

The USD 140 million project of IGMH’s new tower was awarded to Singaporean firm Chung Hua Construction on March 2, 2016 without bid.  The amount is to be repaid within three years directly from the state budget.

Development of Finance Ministry’s new ‘U’ building was awarded to Malaysian Company WZR for USD 122 million under a contractor finance policy.  The amount is to be repaid within 20 years.

After some buildings of Finance were demolished to commence the project, the government had then decided that the project will be carried out in reclaimed suburb Hulhumale instead. However, nothing has yet been completed in Hulhumale regarding the project.

Speaking about IGMH’s new 25 storey building, main opposition Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) lawmaker Ibrahim Shareef said that the project’s documents indicate that the government has been paying the contractors through the United Over Seas Bank (UOB) since May 2016. He also questioned whether the building is worth USD 140 million. Shareef added that the committee has to oversee the total price of the building and how the government is paying for it.

While Shareef’s talk included questions regarding the project’s loan period and interest rate, the government has never indicated that any loans were taken to finance the project.

Eydhafushi MP Ahmed Saleem also supported the probe, declaring that all doubts regarding the project must be cleared.

Furthermore, member of ruling Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) and Vilufushi MP Riyaz Rasheed proposed to request the Auditor General to make a special audit on the issue, which the committee is yet undecided on.

Source URL: Mihaaru-Business

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