Legal concerns raised over Addu City Council decision to claim land

Addu Equatorial Hospital (AEH) | Photo: Sun

Malé, Maldives – Legal entities have raised concern over Addu City Council decision to claim 35 pieces of land from the area surrounding Addu Equatorial Hospital.

Addu City Council on Monday, released a statement stating that those who own land from the area around Addu Equatorial Hospital (AEH) to be claimed by the council, will be compensated from the area initially allocated for the hospital development.

The new hospital in Addu City was initially to be developed on the land south of Addu stadium. With the decision from the council to claim land surrounding AEH, the authority was faced with complaints and criticism from the public.

As per the council, the main purpose of claiming land surrounding AEH is to give the opportunity for economical development in the area. The Council also publicised the charts of the land to be claimed and the charts of where the land will be given back, with today’s statement. The charts dictate that 40 pieces of land surrounding AEH are to be transferred to the new block.

The council also notified the public not to carry out any activities on the land claimed by the council, adding that they will not be responsible for any consequences.

However, President of Public Interest Law Center (PILC) Maryam Shunana said that the letters sent by Addu City council announcing their decision to the land owners are violations of Article 16 and Article 40 of the Constitution. She said that property of an individual can be confiscated without their approval only through a court order. She said that a person’s property cannot be confiscated or brought into state custody through a letter.

Addressing the concerns, Addu City Mayor Ali Nizar said that a large number of citizens are in favour of the decision. However, he has not spoken about the legal aspect of the problem.