Addu councilors took MVR 10,500 as Ramadan gift against regulations: 2018 Audit

Former Deputy Mayor and Hithadhoo Councilor Mohamed Yasrif and Addu City Mayor Abdulla Sodiq | Photo: Addu City Council

Addu City, Maldives – Addu City Council’s 2018 audit report, published yesterday has revealed that Addu councilors had received MVR 10,500 as additional Ramadan gift for the year 2018 against financial guidelines.

The audit report highlighted that employees of the council received a Ramadan gift of MVR 1,500 on top of the standard MVR 3,000 mandated by the law. This additional amount was given to 125 employees, with the expense put on the council’s Welfare and Recreation Club. The seven councilors received this amount as well, which is against remuneration guidelines set by the Maldivian Parliament for local council members.

The policy sates that local council member’s remuneration should only include salary, living allowance, medical insurance and a state provided car for the mayor of a city council. Members of city councils have the same incomes, except the car which is provided to the mayor.

The audit report stated that as per the 5th amendment to the guideline on how councils should spend from council money when giving aid or gifts to individuals, the agreed expenditure should not exceed 40 percent of the reserved amount in the annual council budget.

However, while 40 percent of the reserved amount in the annual council’s 2018 budget was MVR 110,575, the audit has identified that a total of MVR 426,978 was given out as aid to various individuals. The report states that ” MVR 316,406 was identified to be given out against the financial guidelines to various individuals and organizations.”