1,500 letters to HDC: Petition to lower rent of Hiyaa Flats

An aerial view of Hiyaa Flats in Hulhumale' Phase II. (Sun Photo/Mohamed Hayyan)

A total of 1,500 letters were submitted to Hulhumale’ Development Corporation (HDC) on Wednesday, petitioning to lower the rent of Hiyaa Flats in Phase II.

According to Hiya Union, the letters submitted today was the first round of the union's current venture.

It further noted that more letters will be submitted to HDC, distributed over three more rounds.

Furthermore, the union said that this was done to provide ease to HDC in accepting and processing the letters and to also provide the opportunity for a maximum number of flat owners to participate in this.

On previous occasions also, the union had initiated demonstrations to cut down rent of the flats and to increase the grace period to complete finishing works for owners.

The government had already extended the grace period thrice. With the latest extension deadline being the end of March, flat owners will have to start paying from April onwards.

The current set amount to be taken as rent is MVR 7,500, and an additional 1,000 for maintenance.

HDC had previously stated that since the Hiyaa project was undertaken with a loan obtained at a commercial rate, the rent cannot be cut down.

During the tenure of former President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom, MVR 6,000 was set as the rent amount, including maintenance fees.

However, HDC’s audit report published in 2021 stated that this price did not take into consideration the loans taken to fund the project, interest amounts to be paid for refinances, and the cash flow needed to pay back the loans.

Hiya Union is an organization that advocates on behalf of Hiya Flat receivers.