President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih has stated that it is important to simplify the process of developing land use plans of outer islands.
The President made this remark at the second session of the third Viavathi Raajje Conference, on Sunday.
During the session, President Solih noted that amending laws, if necessary to address recurring issues that arise while formulating the plans is also important.
Speaking at the session which focused on land use plans of islands, President Solih noted that the island councils have been experiencing difficulties in developing the plans, which has hindered the development of their communities. Hence, the President noted that it was important to make the process easier for the councilors and to amend any laws that were impeding the process.
During the session, Mohamed Aslam, the Minister of National Planning, Housing and Infrastructure presented a video on how to address specific issues that arise while compiling the land use plans and divulged strategies for avoiding recurring issues. Minister Aslam revealed that the Ministry received land use plans of 60 islands, 11 of which came from councils represented at the third Viavathi Raajje conference. He said that there were still issues in seven plans that were submitted, adding that the most common problem was keeping track of the location of randomly grown natural vegetation in every island.
Furthermore, the council members discussed the issues raised at the "Fanoala Dharubaaru" meeting held prior to the Viavathi Raajje conference. They talked about the need for more technical staff with expertise in developing land use plans, as well as the need for more training and information sessions to familiarize themselves with the process.
President Solih was joined at the panel by Minister of National Planning, Housing, and Infrastructure Mohamed Aslam, Minister of Tourism Dr. Abdulla Mausoom, Minister of Fisheries Marine Resources and Agriculture Dr. Hussain Rasheed Hassan and Member of Parliament for Thulhaadhoo constituency and member of the Parliamentary Committee on Decentralisation Hisaan Hussain.
Prior to the second session, the Maldives Police Service and the Maldives National Defense Force (MNDF) held a session for the council members to update them on their work.
The third Viavathi Raajje Conference was hosted at L. Gan from September 11-12, 2022.
The two-day conference featured four main sessions with presentations and discussions on a variety of topics. These include gender equality, the formulation of land-use plans, fiscal autonomy of local councils and social welfare.