Suspended Maldive Gas head denies money laundering allegations

Suspended Managing Director of Maldive Gas Shazail Siyaam.

The suspended Managing Director of Maldive Gas Shazail Siyaam has denied the allegations of money loaundering raised against him by the Anti-Corruption Commission, as politically motivated allegations. 

Shazail was suspended in October 2019 following allegations of bribery lodged with the Anti-Corruption portal of the President’s Office. The ACC which had been investigating the claims had cleared Shazail of the allegations but found misconduct related to money laundering. The ACC did not explicitly name Shazail in the allegations it requested the police to investigate. 

In a statement on Facebook, Shazail said that the allegations of money laundering were levied against him because of the failure to stick the bribery allegations and said that the allegations were politically motivated. 

Shazail said that the allegations were for the political benefit of some people to frame him and destroy his reputation. He added that he would face the allegations fully determined to prove his innocence. 

The ACC is also looking into three other instances of possible corruption within Maldive Gas. They include the alleged deposit of suspicious funds to the company account, alleged corruption in hiring employees, and alleged corruption in the bidding process of a maintenance project.

Shazail serves as the MD of Maldive Gas as a member of the MRM, which is part of the governing coalition of parties. He had served as the Chairman of Kooddoo Fisheries Maldives during the administration of President Yameen and even as the Deputy Minister of the Fisheries Ministry and the Tourism Ministry.