President Abdulla Yameen and his administration has been criticized for their MVR 40 million expense on celebratory events for the opening of the Sinamalé Bridge.
Several lawmakers and prominent members of the opposition have openly questioned the virtue of spending MVR 46 million, the amount announced by the government, on such an event.
The bridge opening event included light shows and fireworks events. Faisal Naseem, the Joint Opposition’s presidential candidate, said that the expense shows that government will do ‘whatever it pleases’ without paying mind to the needs of the people.
Speaking at a campaign event in Dharavandhoo island of Baa atoll on Thursday night, Faisal said that the money could have been used to develop facilities in islands where they are severely lacking.
Referring to Dharavandhoo island, Faisal said that school children are required to board a vessel every day and travel to educational facilities elsewhere in the atoll and that such scenarios are common in other outlying atolls as well.
Describing the entire affair as exceedingly and unnecessarily decadent, Faisal said that, with the Maldives’ debt predicted to rise by the end of the year, the expense is saddening to witness.