Meraki ownership not in asset declaration due to Presidents Office mistake: Mabrouq

Mabrouq Azeez, Spokesperson of Presidents Office and owner of Meraki Coffee Roasters | Photo: Dho

Malé, Maldives – Spokesperson of the President’s Office of Maldives, Mabrouq Azeez has stated that his ownership of Meraki was not listed in his asset declaration published on the President’s Office due to a mistake made by the office.

When ‘The Times of Addu’ contacted to clarify the discrepancy after finding that Mabrouq’s asset declaration published on the website did not include his ownership of the infamous coffee house, Mabrouq stated that he has never hidden his ownership of the café and that he had even mentioned his ownership in the form submitted to the President’s Office.

He further pointed out that one webpage of the President’s Office website had an asset declaration which mentioned his ownership of Meraki, while another did not. He further added that it is likely a mistake in updating the information submitted in his asset declaration form onto the website, and that it would be rectified immediately.

After ‘The Times of Addu’ contacted Mabrouq, his asset declaration on the website has been updated. While one of the asset declarations dated October 28, 2020 uploaded to the Presidents Office website mentioned that Mabrouq had received MVR 230,992.50 as income from his government job within six months, another stated that he had received MVR 120,000 from Meraki.

However, the updated asset declaration which is currently on the Presidents Office website shows that Spokesperson Mabrouq got MVR 230,992.50 from his job at Presidents Office and MVR 33,163.77 from Meraki Coffee Roasters. In his asset declaration which was published by MDP during the parliamentary campaign in 2019 stated that Mabrouq was taking a fixed monthly salary of MVR 20,000 from Meraki Coffee Roasters.

Prior to this appointment as the Spokesperson of the Presidents Office, Mabrook was working as the Undersecretary of Communications at the Presidents Office. In a press release by the Presidents Office, it stated that President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih had created Spokesperson’s position at the President’s Office and that Mohamed Mabrook Azeez was appointed to the post.