Former Maldivian President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom said on Thursday that decisions that facilitate corruption are unacceptable, no matter whom the decision makers may be.
The remark comes less than a day after the Parliament passed amendments to its Standing Orders which will allow parliamentarians to keep the financial declarations of their spouses and children who have yet to reach legal age confidential.
The amendments, which many protest as an opportunity for corruption to go unchecked, was proposed by Speaker, former President Mohamed Nasheed, and passed with the vote of 62 parliamentarians.
In a tweet on Thursday morning, Maumoon, who is the founder of the Maldives Reform Movement (MRC), a member of the government coalition, wrote that decisions which facilitate corruption are a clear violation of the government’s zero tolerance to corruption police.
“Decisions that facilitate corruption are unacceptable, no matter whom the decision makers may be. And it is also a blatant violation of the government’s zero tolerance policy,” wrote Maumoon.
އެއްވެސް ބަޔަކު ކޮރަޕްޝަނަށް މަގުފަހިވާ ގޮތަށް ކަމެއް ނިންމުމަކީ ބަލައިގަނެވޭނެ ކަމެއް ނޫން. އެއީ ސަރުކާރުގެ ޒީރޯ ޓޮލަރެންސް ސިޔާސަތާ ކަނޑަ އެޅިގެން ޚިލާފު ކަމެއް . @presidencymv @ACC_Maldives @MRM_Office— Maumoon Abdul Gayoom (@maumoonagayoom) July 2, 2020
The Parliament’s Standing Orders had previously required parliamentarians to publicize their financial declarations, along with the financial declarations of their spouses and children who are under the age of 18 years on an annual basis.
And the main ruling party Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP), which enjoys a supermajority at the Parliament, in the run up to the 2019 parliamentary elections, had pledged to ensure parliamentarians prepare financial declarations for themselves, their spouses, and their children, who are under the age of 18 years, audit them, submit them to the Auditor General’s Office, and publicize them on the Parliament’s website on an annual basis.
The Parliament’s General Purpose Committee, which had evaluated the amendment, wrote in its report that the committee requested comments on the subject from Anti-Corruption Commission, Auditor General’s Office, and Transparency Maldives.
The committee said they had taken the comments from the three institutions into account in making its decision in favor of making the amendments.
ACC said that it is imperative that the financial declarations are publicized without personal information to boost public confidence in the integrity of the parties who submit the financial declarations, and hold them accountable over questions regarding their integrity.
The commission opinioned that while it may continue to be stipulated that the financial declarations of children under the age of 18 years must be submitted, publicizing the information may cause more harm than good.
Transparency Maldives recommended that financial declarations which exclude information on spouses and children under the age of 18 years must be publicized only after establishing and implementing a mechanism which will allow for the information to be independently verified.