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'Decentralization is the foundation of development' - Pres Solih

Oct 16, 2019

Male (Maldives) Oct 16: President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih has stated that the Government's vision on development was achieving an 'island-style' lifestyle for the country through decentralization.
In a tweet posted by the President on Wednesday, he confirmed that amendments to the Decentralization Act has been submitted to the Parliament for deliberation by the Government last Monday.
"This is the foundation of our desired development", President Solih said.
One of the proposed amendments include ensuring the financial stability of local councils by allocating 40% revenue generated from leasing land, islands and lagoons, and 100% revenue from land and other resources in the direct jurisdiction of the council. Moreover, all Public Sector Investment Programs (PSIP) under MVR 5 million is also proposed to fall under local councils as sectoral grants.
The administration further proposed to amend the roles and regulations of local councils including fixing the term of local councils to five years, and ensuring that women fill 33.3% (or one-third) of all council seats. Mayors of city councils and Presidents and Vice Presidents of local councils are also proposed to be elected through a public vote.
The proposed amendments also state the creation of a Secretary General position for the local councils, and that the appointment of an individual to the position must be coordinated by the council. Furthermore, empowering local council to grant access to water and sewerage, and electricity services on their own or through the help of a signed third party is also included in the proposal.
In addition to the empowerment of the local councils, the proposal also includes stating the responsibilities of Women's Development Committees and deciding a wage for members of the committee.